This week we did our twice yearly trip to Iowa to visit our daughter Rebecca, then to Missouri to visit my mom and brothers.
Obviously, I don’t get out enough. I came out of the bathroom and was waiting for Murray when we’d stopped during our drive, and a man walked by me and said, “Greetings, Earthling. Salutations.” I was so tickled.
Cracker Barrel seemed a fun place to stop for lunch, and it was. I got a fried chicken salad, so yummy, which didn’t come with anything according to the menu, but the server asked if I wanted any cornbread or biscuits.
Murray ordered a breakfast plate, which included, in part, biscuits and gravy and a bowl of grits. The server came by and asked if he’d like more biscuits, and he said what he’d really like was some more grits. “We love Grits,” he told her. She brought him a larger bowl the second time.
Murray starts a conversation with everyone along the way. He met a regular customer of that Cracker Barrel—he called the cashier by name—and when the man learned we were from Cleveland, he shared delightedly about when he visited the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
On Saturday we went with Rebecca to a fundraiser in Carroll, where slightly flawed, not usually noticeably so, sportswear was being sold. I asked Rebecca to look for shorts for me, and she brought me a pair for a four-year-old. I said that probably wasn’t for me, and she said, “Just checkin’.”
Rebecca’s kitty Milly is definitely growing more used to us. She hissed her love for us whenever she could, and she only bit me once enough to draw blood.
I love visiting the animal shelter where Rebecca volunteers. As soon as we open the door into the area where the dogs stay, everyone in the room greets us with such loud excitement.
Murray talks to the GPS app on his phone a lot as we travel, and the voice said something new and delightful this trip. He’d ask how many miles to somewhere, and she responded, “If you’re driving . . .”
To add enjoyment to everyone else in the car, for the rest of the trip, I would respond back to her, “If you’re crawling . . . if you’re sitting on the ground and scooting . . . if you’re doing cartwheels . . .”
I always enjoy listening to the ducks and roosters on the farm when we visit Mom. Since my last visit, my brother Jim has acquired a donkey. I went outside and tried to get him to answer my braying, but he did not cooperate.
Jim also has a huge white, wooly dog named Fred, who weighs 160 pounds. When I first met Fred a year or so ago, I made him nervous by getting excited and rushing toward him. He’s not comfortable with strangers.
I promised Jim I would be cautious and careful this time, and I got to give Fred an examination, rubbing his big nose and shaking his giant paw.
On Tuesday we had lunch at Dave’s Pizza with my brother Rodney and our cousin Lorie. When we were seated, Lorie began a conversation with Ping-Hwei and asked, “What are you doing now?” He replied, “I’m on vacation.”
There could be no truer words, but it made us laugh for days. We all might need to get out more.