I Meant To Do That

Sometimes I do something so boneheaded that I am almost (almost) tempted to pretend it never happened.

I believe in the power of unburdening myself publicly because I figure that it’s better for me out myself than to have someone else do it. So here goes.

I left for vacation four days early.

Yes, I have a calendar and it clearly says that we are due in Maine on July 23rd. Since we had to swing by Michigan to pick up grandma, I figured that we should leave on the 19th, arrive in Michigan on the 20th, fart around Loony’s old stomping grounds for a couple days and then hit Niagara Falls on the 22nd and arrive in Maine on the 23rd. Perfect.

Except somewhere in the chaos and panic of leaving I got the dates switched in my head and thought we needed to be in Maine on the 19th so we left on the 15th.

Yes, I looked at my calendar. Every … Single … Day.

Now Loony is never going to let me live this down.

I’m going to make lemonade out of these lemons and take this opportunity to explore the east coast a little more so we’re adding a beach day at Lake Huron, an overnighter at Niagara Falls, another overnighter in Cape Cod, a day in Boston, and we’re going to add a day onto Maine to explore the other side of Acadia.

See? Lemonade.

I’m grateful that Loony isn’t as much of a vindictive harpy as I am because if he was, I would never hear the end of it.

Warning: This next part is going to be boring to everyone except my dad (Hi Dad!) and even he might glaze over, but my blog is part dull diary so here it is.

We arrived in Michigan in record time and were reunited with Loony’s mom, Anita. She’s such a dear.


The boys were sick pretty much the entire ride. The upside is that I didn’t have to feed them much and no one shit himself or threw up in the car. All-in-all it was an uneventful ride.


Loony grew up on seven acres of heavily wooded land. It is easy to see how he became such a nature boy.


Adjacent to his mother’s home are some pretty wacky neighbors. They take being into Christmas to a whole new level.

For one, they have the craziest addition on their house. On one side it’s a pretty straightforward house. The other side is Santa’s Workshop.


And they have reindeer.


They actually have a pretty sweet setup although if it were me, I would have opted for chickens and pygmy goats rather than reindeer.

They are tricky to breed (their first one died during labor) and they never got up to the nine that they were hoping for, ending up with just two.

They are funny creatures, smaller than you’d imagine with buggy eyes and a nervous disposition.


I have MAD RESPECT for these folks, by the way. While Christmas is not my thing, I totally dig how they just fucking go for it, you know?


The neighbors also have cats. Lots of cats.


Testiclese put it best when he said, “These Midland cats sure are nice. It must be their style.”


I was grateful he didn’t call them slutty like I do all the time because I would be MORTIFIED if he used that one out of context. I mean, I don’t know if anyone but me uses the word slutty to mean something positive and not misogynist.

But these cats are total slutbags.


My kids were in total heaven. So were the cats.


Testiclese got all “Double Fantasy” with Shaft, as I like to call him.


We spent a couple days knocking around Midland which is home to Dow Chemical, where his father worked as a chemist for decades. The philanthropic hand of Dow is felt everywhere.

I’m not a “better living through chemistry” person quite like Loony is (but given his upbringing, how could he be any other way) but I enjoyed the way Dow gave back to its community.

Dow Gardens is a beautiful example. We spent an afternoon strolling through the beautiful grounds.


There is a children’s garden that I would have spent every day at had I settled here with the family.


I couldn’t resist the urge to play with shadows.


They have a much more successful vertical garden than I do.


That’s our Michigan adventure. Next stop, Canada and Cape Cod!



12 thoughts on “I Meant To Do That

  1. Well if you have a few extra days check out Vermont. Ben and Jerry’s, the lake front, and Stowe’s alpine slide are all fantastic.

  2. “They say that cat Shaft is a BAD motherf*****r”

    “Hush yo mouth!”

    I’m talkin bout Shaft”…

  3. Safely back from Beijing and appreciate the great photos of your trip! What a wonderful environment L grew up in!

  4. Really? Did I know the “original Shaft cat”? Was that from back in the earier days when you lived over on Pleasant St.? & what was your landlady’s name, was it Martha? Yeah that was a long time ago, I remember the place but I don’t necessarily remember the cat, OK?… but what I do remember is the performance at the Academy Awards, would’ve been about ’76 or so?, anyway Issac Hayes in his suit of chains, there with his band, doing the theme from “Shaft” the movie. Blew the whole bullshit television thing away…now that was memorable.

    (& p.s, mostly I get your jokes & high-cultural references. Usually but not always…)

  5. Pingback: Sometimes You Have To Read Between the Lines | Vivienne's Process of Elimination

  6. Pingback: My Southern Relations | Vivienne's Process of Elimination

Leave a Reply