Sunday, June 29, 2008

Friday, June 27, 2008 Adam’s Street, Tucumcari, New Mexico

I told the kids last night that they were not allowed to get out of bed this morning until Momo (my mom) got up, unless they had to use the bathroom. Mom was up around 6:30 to shower, Kyra shortly after her to read, and Tasha bolted out of bed, got dressed and crawled in bed with me around 7:30. She’s a snuggly little thing in the morning and it is pretty sweet. We all walked down to the Magdalena Café for breakfast while listening to Tasha complain about how far it was. She had walked twice that distance the night before to get some of the wiggles out before bed but now she was hungry and cranky. She ended up eating her entire plate sized pancake without a blink, 2 pieces of hefty bacon, and downed it all with about 6 oz of chocolate milk. My mom and I split a fabulous veggie omelet that had been generously smothered in green chilies. Ah, I love New Mexico and their willingness to put green chilies on everything! I don’t know if this is true in every family, but when you get together with extended family it always seems to be about the food. I’ll try to avoid any further play-by-plays on our eating habits.

Kyra has been a trooper so far in the car. Two, 5-6 hour trips and she hasn’t strangled her sister yet. Maybe she is a little older than our last road trip, maybe it was the threat that I made her this morning, or maybe it’s a little bit of both. Thursday morning as we were getting ready to leave they were arguing over something ridiculous. I pulled them each aside individually for a kind, motherly lecture. Kyra’s went something like this: “When you were Tasha’s age I traveled everywhere with you because you were not in school. I could just as easily do the same thing with Tasha and leave you at home. She is fine when she doesn’t have to compete with you and I can easily leave you at home. I don’t want to leave you here, so please prove to me that you deserve to come.” I actually saw awareness hit her solemn, almost-10-year-old face as she agreed to do her best to keep the peace. (Was this wrong?! My mom seemed to think that was a pretty harsh thing to tell her.)

On our way into Tucumcari we stopped at the cemetery where my grandparents are buried to place some flowers by their headstone. Then we drove by their old home which is in a sad state with dead grass, missing bushes, and junk strewn all over the back yard. I don’t know if it is possible or not, but I think my grandparent’s neighbor still lives next door with the same dogs. OK, I’m sure it can’t be the same dogs 20 years later, but they still are the yappin’est things direct from my childhood memories. I told the kids of the giant 3wheeled bikes that I used to ride on up and down the empty neighborhood street. When we came to the end of the block I saw the house with the concrete turn-around spot that I used sometimes. Again, is it possible that the original owners were still there with the same little trike tipped over in front of the porch?!

At one point on the drive, about 40 miles outside of Tucumcari, my mom mentioned that it was now that she usually became sad. It was then that she realized she should be going to visit “mama and daddy” but that they weren’t going to be there to greet her. We recalled how they would always be sitting out on their front porch waiting for us to pull up, or else they would be opening the screen door before we had a chance to put the car in park. We used to make that trip in one long 11 hour drive, with no cell phones. They must have been looking out the windows for hours just anticipating our arrival. That is dedication, and they sure were something special. I am so grateful that their temple work has been done and that I can look forward to meeting them in heaven again. I never knew my grandfather to be without a cane or hearing aids, so it will be a grand time when I make him chase me down for a hug and whisper “I love you” in his ear. I can still smell his deodorant, taste my grandmother’s cookies, and feel their loving embrace. Maybe they have followed us to Logan and are here with me right now as I listen to the hum of the room air-conditioner and watch my children flop back and forth on their beds by the glare of the computer screen.

Seriously, where are my mom and I supposed to sleep?!


April said...

jihonzpwI don't think it was too mean. She's 10. You gave a her a dose of reality in a kind way. Honesty is best with tween's I think.

April said...

I'm really smat tonight. In case you were wondering that's the code to leave a comment.