J had us wake up at 3:30 a.m. to make the Thanksgiving journey to D.C. I can't complain now because the trip took barely four hours and we encountered no traffic. Plus, as promised, I was allowed to sleep the entire way while he drove. It was a good idea. But at the time I was ready to kill - waking up before sunrise to travel being one of the top 10 things I hate to do. I must say, however, that the quick trip was a great start to a just-about-perfect holiday break. My new husband spent his first Thanksgiving with the Rotondaros. Over dinner, after each naming one thing we were thankful for (I demanded it), we talked family gossip and about the dogs. My father lamented Lucy's submissive nature - the fact that she makes a face like a "Chinese whore" after she's done something wrong, or believes she's upset my parents in any way. We question the comparison of the labradoodle's facial expression (when eager to please or scared she's upset the humans, she shows her front teeth while wagging her tail and peeing on the floor) to something, well, that we hope, at least, my father's never experienced, but his constant worry about her confidence always rouses the crowd and, personally, I like that he wants the dog to have better self esteem.
After a lot of good wine and a good night's sleep we headed to the Bay Friday and had a delightful late lunch at Cantler's Riverside Inn. It's the kind of place where they lay brown paper down on the table because, yes, you're going to be that messy. We ordered extra-large crabs and beers and then spent the day watching sweet cable (it might be time for J and I, it just might...) and eating Thanksgiving leftovers. J spotted some ducks.
We canned the idea of leaving Saturday to avoid holiday traffic and decided to round up the troops and head out to DC. First to Vinnie's apartment where Max, Grant, J and I had a few cocktails - that wedding yielded a lot of leftover vodka - and met up with Abby before heading to the Brickskellar, home of 7 trillion beers. I'm barely exaggerating. We met up with more friends and decided that, despite D.C. being way cooler, we would head into Alexandria and make a stop at Chadwick's, the bar we love to make fun of but where we always end up at the end of the night due to the magnetic power of the place. It's unheard of to go and not bump into some old friend from high school. We rallied with the new plan and before we finished the last of our big, fancy beers and got on our way I made a quick stop in the bathroom. I hung my grey pea coat on the back of the door, then grabbed it just before departing from the very tiny stall and whipped it 'round my shoulders, exhilarated by the night, my friends, a great end to a great Thanksgiving break. That's when I heard a thump, a clatter and realized my cell phone, the one I'd bought after the famed incident at Christy's party - where I'd dropped my new picture phone into the toilet just before passing out on her bed with her dog and, also, with my rear hanging ever so slightly out of the back of my low cut fashionable jeans which that grad student Brian saw and which, months later, caused him to show me his ass while out in Chapel Hill to make the situation fair, see, because I'd been angry ever since that he didn't, at least, cover me up with a blanket - had flown from my pocket into the toilet. As I'd just flushed the water rushed around the thing, threatening to take it down into the pipes. Thank the Lord that didn't happen because I'm pretty sure that would have caused some plumbing issues and I guess I could have been held to blame for that. I reached in and picked it up, not even concerned with it ever working again like I had been the last time. "It's over," I thought. "I'm going to have to get a new one." I headed out to tell my friends the news. Things weren't so bad. Everyone I would have wanted to call was there with me. Plus, sometimes it's just time for a new phone. And there's nothing like a semi-dramatic end to a holiday break, seeing family and friends, and ushering in the Christmas season with a round of laughter from those you love after sticking your hand in a dirty bar toilet.