Friday, July 30, 2010

Grumpy Summer Vacation, Day 16

Today we drove to Middleofnowhere, Utah, where my MIL has rented a large house for us to meet up with her, Mrs. Grumpy’s brothers, and their families for a few days.

Family reunions with this branch have always been interesting. In the past they’ve involved trips to the lake, which have ended with someone accidentally sinking a boat in shallow water. So this year they picked a place nowhere near a lake.

As we drove through Utah we had to stop for highway construction. A young guy holding one of those Stop/Slow signs brought our column of cars to halt. He motioned for us to roll down the window.

Mrs. Grumpy: “Hi.”

Mr. RM: “Sorry, folks. Road work going on. Gonna be about 5 minutes before the guide vehicle comes back.”

Mrs. Grumpy: “Okay.”

Mr. RM: “While you’re waiting, would you like a copy of the Book of Mormon?”

When we finally got to high-altitude Middleofnowhere, it was colder than we thought it would be. Unfortunately, we’d sent our jackets back home with my parents after the cruise.

All of us were fine except Craig, who was convinced he was going to die of hypothermia. So I set off to find a cheap sweatshirt.

This wasn't as easy as it sounds. We’re in the middle of nowhere, and couldn’t find a Wal-Mart (those of you who know how much I hate Wal-Mart will understand how desperate I must have been to be looking for one).

After driving through town (which took < 1 minute) I located the local store, which had some cheap sweatshirts. When I was checking out the guy at the cash register asked me “do you need any ammo or kerosene?”

My MIL has rented this HUGE house for the family reunion, so that each family can have their own bedroom. Whoever designed this place was remarkably fond of mirrors, and has them on, quite literally, every wall (and a few ceilings) in all the rooms & hallways. It makes me wonder if we’re being videotaped for some sort of “family reunities in the boondocks and kills each other” reality show.

Another oddity of the house is an old headless mannequin, wearing a white dress.

Exactly why anyone thought this would enhance the beauty of the place is beyond me. All it needs was some blood on the gown and ghost stories to scare the little kids.

Since getting here the thing has made the rounds, randomly showing up in various showers, closets, and beds.

One of my SIL's brought some gifts for the kids, leftover headbands from the movie "Kung-Fu Panda". Their are 5 types, each one listing a character's martial arts style from the flick. So they say things like "Monkey Style" or "Tiger Style". In retrospect, I guess it's a good thing there wasn't a doggie in the film.

When dinner finally rolled around, my MIL called a local place to order food, and my BIL Rob and I were designated to go pick it up.

Rob is an interesting guy. His job requires him to drive long distances between rural areas. To pass the time he installed a DVD player in his truck so he can watch movies while driving (I swear!). Ever since I married his sister he’s been after me to leave my job and open a lawn mowing service with him.

As we were driving along I noticed that the the DVD player had broken, and asked him what happened. He replied “Oh, I loaned the truck to this stupid kid who lives in town. While he was driving he accidentally spilled a milkshake into it. People are so fucked up these days. I mean, what kind of idiot would trust a kid like that?”

I didn’t bother to answer the question.

The sign in front of Local Dump said: “Take-Out Service: Pull up on east side of building, and we will bring it out to you.”

So Rob pulled up on the west side of the building, and stopped.

I wanted to be polite, so I didn’t say anything. I watched as someone drove up to the other side of the building, got their order, and headed off. Rob just sat there.

Finally he said: “I wonder where our order is?”

Dr. Grumpy: “Um, I think we’re supposed to be on the east side of the building. That’s what the sign says.”

BIL Rob: “I know, but we are on the east side.”

Dr. Grumpy: “We’re on the west side. See, look at the sun.”

BIL: “No, the sign meant east side as you look at the building from the road. We’re turned around now, and so the sides are reversed”.

Dr. Grumpy: “East and west don’t change. We need to be on that side of the building”

BIL Rob: “We’re on the east side. Trust me.”

It wasn’t worth arguing. So we continued waiting. After a few more minutes Rob went into the restaurant and came back with the food. He told me he hadn’t tipped the waitress, because she was an idiot who didn’t know the difference between east and west.


watercolordaisy said...

Bwahahahahhaaaaa! That's perfect. Hope y'all don't have to order any more food from them, though. lol!

Lo said...

I think I may now understand how you manage to put up with those patients of yours......

Miss Kismet said...

I love that dress, but the creepy headless mannequin would have given me nightmares as a kid!

Sounds like Mrs. Grumpy got the brains in the family...I know a few people who think it's perfectly okay to watch TV while they drive. I'm waiting for natural selection to kick in before they reproduce...

Frantic Pharmacist said...

Still going strong on Day 16 !! I must say you've got some stamina Dr. G. ... the Alaskan cruise with 3 kids would have done me in!

Ros said...

Turn the car 90 degree and you'll be on the north side from which you can see whether orders are going out to the east or west... right?

C said...

Wait! My family is from middle of nowhere Utah. I have a diary of my Great Great Great Great..blah blah Grandfather who talks about meeting Joseph Smith and hobbling horses so they wouldn't get taken by the soldiers. I'm not Mormon, that my Fathers, drinking and cigars stopped that, but the history is pretty cool. I have a very common Mormon Last Name. You've probably met a bunch of my relatives already!

Anonymous said...

even gps won't help that

Don said...

Driving while watching DVDs is rather dangerous, I must agree. When I did a daily 75 mile one way commute, I found that it was much better to read the newspaper while driving. I could get thru the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal going into work, the local paper, the two NYC tabloids on the way home.
This habit ended without an accident, when my wonderful wife found out about this habit. She started making low growling noises in the back of her throat(as do our cats), fondling a rusty pair of kitchen shears, and started talking about how Lorena Bobbit had the right idea.
Nowadays I settle for driving well over the speed limit in heavy traffic, while eating truck stop pizza, guzzling soda, and looking at everything around me.
Thanks again for a delightful travelogue!

Anonymous said...

ha ha- your mil rented a polygamist home.

Anonymous said...

Looks like somebody stole the pumpkin off of Aunt Tessie again.

Gen said...

Your vacation is never-ending. It must have taken months to coordinate everyone's schedules. Your own family, your parents, Mrs. Grumpy's parents and then all of the peripheral family...SILs, BILs, cousins etc.

Anonymous said...

Do they read your blog?

Are you trying to be uninvited to the next family reunion?

Rise said...

my mom once called a business, asking for directions. at one point she asked if the store was north of some street. the answer: well, it depends on which way you're coming from. She couldn't stop laughing and my aunt had to take the phone away to finish getting the directions.

Angela said...

ahahaha oh BIL's how funny they are...

and ouch wal-mart, you really must have been despret!!


Ben S said...

When do we get to hear about your side of the family?

Cate said...

Your BIL Rob sounds JUST like my cousin-in-law Rob.

Liz said...

I am convinced that you are surrounded by a level of "special-ness" that no one man should be forced to endure.

Anonymous said...

Love it!!! Family reunions invite so much inappropiate humor!

Kathy G said...

Clicked over from a link on the Travel website. Glad I did; I'll be back.

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