Home for the Holidays
I was already at the airport when I realized I had forgotten the winter coat I just purchased and the present I had bought for my boyfriend’s mother. As I cursed myself, I boarded the plane destined to Newark, NJ, venturing east for Thanksgiving.
Born and bred in the Garden State, my home turf had recently become most associated with “The Sopranos” and by many referred to as the armpit of our nation, but for me it meant home, family and freezing cold weather (with a little Bruce Springsteen thrown in). This year I would not be spending the actual holiday with my own unique brood of relatives since I had been invited to spend Thanksgiving in Boston with my boyfriend’s family.
My boyfriend, Bubba (yes, he’s called Bubba, but was raised in FL- if you grow up below the Mason-Dixon line it’s allowed) was picking me up from the airport. He still resided at the Jersey shore and would be moving to San Diego in January. It had been three months since we had laid eyes (or hands) on each other and was the longest we had ever been apart. After much canoodling and thin crust pizza eating, we returned to Bubba’s for a release of pent up tension. Absence = makes the heart (and loins) grow fonder.
While I was in town I decided to find out how some of the old pals were doing. I went out to breakfast with my girlfriend who just had a baby in April. As we chatted about ancient memories over our pork roll (a deliciously, salty breakfast meat native to NJ) and cheese sandwiches, she just happened to mention that she was pregnant again. Whoops! The pill doesn’t always work. New life = another damn kid I’ve got to buy a present for!
Unfortunately, with life, there’s always death. I found out upon my arrival home that a friend of ours had died of an overdose. He had just passed the NJ and NY bar and was one of the funniest people I ever met. Heroin = death.
Boston proved to be the spectacular city that everyone had named it. We went ice skating at the outdoor rink in the heart of downtown and laughed at the kid with the full face helmet, who went really fast, but then just slammed into the wall (again and again).
That night we went to “The Lion King” musical. At the end of the show, I reached under the chair in front of me to retrieve my sweater. It was gone. As I started to become alarmed, the woman who had occupied the seat held it out and asked if it was mine. I took it appreciatively as she guiltily darted out of the aisle. I was puzzled until a moment later when Bubba asked the question, “Where’s my souvenir bag?”
We had gotten a free hat and program when we arrived at the theater since his mom had bought a package deal. The woman looked back as his question rose into the air, desperately trying to make her way up the crowded aisle (with her seven year old daughter and the souvenir bag in tow).
“Our hotel key was in that bag!” I cried out. It was a bold lie, but my tactic had worked as she quickly peeked into the bag, further proving her guilt. I couldn’t believe that a grown woman would do that. Thanks for giving me back my sweater! Theft = karma.
Well, soon enough I was back at Newark airport, only to find myself bumped off an extremely overbooked flight the Monday after Thanksgiving. Bumped = $300 voucher so I can do this all again at Christmas.
To sum it up, my vacation consisted of :
(and a partridge in a pear tree).