Road Trip

9:44 AM

Last weekend was a very short roadtrip to Wisconsin for my grandparents' 50th wedding anniversary party. Some interesting things are, as follows:

"They don't drink water in Wisconsin; only milk and beer." according to my brother-in-law, clearly frustrated at the lack of water quality. And it's just about true. The consolation is that we were staying at the family dairy farm, which means.... all the pure and wonderful raw milk you can drink! *sigh* Bliss.

Staying at the "homestead" was one of the highlights of the trip. Watching The Niece and Nephew playing with toys that I played with as a child, washing dishes in the kitchen, finding barn kittens, letting itty-bitty calves suck on my fingers, the smell of fresh cut hay, the damp coolness of the milking parlor, the bachelor Uncles that remind me SO much of my daddy, the ever-present Green Bay Packer loyalty. I haven't been to the farm in the summertime for years and years, so I was very happy.

Sheba and Bob, the mangy sheep-herding dogs that now work at the farm (they herd cows, not sheep. just in case you were wondering). They lay down and roll over whenever you get within 20 feet. And my 23-month-old niece could tell them apart. What a smart girl she is!

Remember that book obsession o' mine? The Sis and I went "snooping" (as The Dad called it) through the attic. AND I found some lovely old books--but seriously, can old books be anything but lovely?--classic Nancy Drew. Don't hate! It reminds me of my childhood. The Diary of Anne Frank, The Great Escape and two books that I picked up because they were 60+ years old and looked interesting. Oh yes, and I wondered aloud why my Catholic family had books by Billy Graham. Hmmm.

Playing volleyball with various cousins, brothers, aunts, uncles, etc. I was made fun of because the cries of pain whenever the volleyball hit me... errr, rather, I hit the volleyball. :) That volleyball was hard as a rock! My whining was justified. I now have 3 purpley-black-green bruises on my arm. See!! I'm not a wimp!

Meat. Now I know where that carnivorous streak in my dad comes from. It's a German/Wisconsin/farmer thing!! :) Seriously, I like meat, but he LOVES meat. And it's no wonder. Bratwurst, summer sausage, fried fish, smoked salmon, roast pork and ham, etc. The only thing that didn't have meat was the toasted cheese sandwiches they wanted for breakfast (Breakfast! Who does that?). Oh wait, they ended up putting bacon on those. *rolls eyes*

Ya know, I met more people I'm related to than any other time in my life. Second cousins, great-uncles, third cousins, cousins removed, children of cousins and cousins removed... I could not remember who anybody was after about 5 minutes of introductions. After that, I just nodded and smiled and stuck to basic phrases like, "I'm hungry" and "Mmhmm." :) Intelligent, aren't I? And we took so many family pictures that my face hurt from smiling.

Strange as it sounds, I like the travelling part of road trips. The Little Bro rode shotgun during my night-driving stint on the way to Wisconsin. Our goal: To make it to the next state. My only-two-hours-of-sleep the night before probably wasn't too smart, but we made it to the next state without hurting anyone. Having 4+ drivers helps with the driving-through-the-night deal. Besides driving, there's alot of sleeping in awkward positions, making faces and singing funny songs to The Niece (aka. "Small Person"), eating Honeycomb cereal and drinking lots of caffeinated beverages.

Good times. :)

(disclaimer: I hate alcohol and utterly despise drunkenness. The mention of beer is an observation, not an endorsement.)

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