The Diary of Ashley Spencer: The Spencer Family Vacation and the McDonald's Curse
It’s 7:15 in the morning, and I am drinking coffee in a plush terrycloth robe on my balcony overlooking the beach. It’s beautiful. I am on vacation in Florida, where I plan on eating lots of fish, drinking lots of daiquiris, and reading lots of books. I’m ready to take it easy.
But nothing with my family is easy.
Yesterday morning, we left our house just after 5:30 a.m., an hour when everyone is barely conscious and super cranky. It didn’t help that the taxi's radio kept receiving this call: “please do not short block.” There were so many things that annoyed me about this situation, and I will list them even though I’m now getting off subject of how bat-poop crazy my family is. First: What in the world does short block mean? Second, why do taxi drivers even need a radio when they already have people in the car? I swear it’s to be annoying! And why do they talk in codes? Why can’t they just say whatever short block really means? Like, please pick the people up in front of their homes, not down the block or whatever.
I’m not exaggerating when I say we heard the phrase “please do not short block” about 35 times during our 20-minute ride. And although at first it was annoying, it soon became funny. Soon my mother and I were trying to say PDNSB at the same time as the radio. Then my mom took her finger and wrote PLEASE DO NOT SHORT BLOCK on the foggy back window of the taxi. My mom kept repeating ICE and PIMP, which are two text messaging codes she made up for “I can’t even” and “peeing in my pants.” She thinks she’s 12 and likes to talk in text.
We finally arrived at the airport and proceeded to security, where my mother was stopped and given a full body inspection. Most people would be annoyed or embarrassed to be patted down head to toe in front of the entire line, but my mom seemed to be enjoying the attention. As the female guard felt her underwire bra to check for explosives, she giggled and tossed her head back.
Then we decided to get some McDonald's breakfast, which is a family tradition when we travel that early in the morning. This is the part where my mom thinks she has lost her purse, but really I have it, because I saw she was about to leave it at the security checkpoint where she was getting her rubdown. If I hadn’t grabbed it, she would have lost the 600 dollars in cash she was carrying. I let her flip out for a minute in the McDonald's line.
MOM: OMG where my purse?
ME: No idea. Is it huge and black and full of 600 dollars?
MOM: YES. OMG. Where did I leave it?
ME: No idea. I think some redhead has it tucked under her arm.
MOM: Where is that beoytch?
ME: Really? Really? How about the redhead right next to you, the one you gave birth to?
We boarded the plane without much fanfare. I’ll skip the ride, because we all slipped into a deep, deep sleep caused by a mixture of heavy McDonald’s brewing in our tummies, and pills (none of us can really fly without prescription drugs).
We landed in Fort Lauderdale, and my uncle David picked us up. He is the sweetest man I know and it’s a wonder he’s related to the same family that swears in the airport, enjoys boob rubs in the airport, and takes poops in the airport.
Our trip had officially begun. But I had to pee and after my mom texted all her friends that OMG she’s here in Florida and it’s like so much warmer than Chicago, she decided she wanted a diet coke. So my uncle pulled into another McDonald's, because obviously we’re fiends. My mom unlocked the truck and began to search for her purse.
It was nowhere to be found.
My dad yelled words so foul, I suddenly wondered what sailor we picked up in the McDonald’s parking lot. My mom started saying OMG over and over again. My brother blared his rap music and looked generally stupid and apathetic, like normal. My uncle, the one source of normalcy, rounded up the troops and drove us back to the airport.
“There’s not a chance in hell that purse is going to be there,” my dad said optimistically.
“OMG. OMG. ICE. ICE,” my mom lamented in her abbreevs.
“Relax,” my uncle said as he eased back into the same spot were he picked us up.
My mom and I got out of the car, and found the purse sitting on a ledge, where a police officer stood guarding it. All six hundred dollars were in the wallet, and to my mother's relief, no one had stolen her “LOL” key chain. She was happy. My father stopped swearing. My brother’s music was still rocking out to his headphones (I’m not even sure he noticed we came back to the airport). We pulled out into the highway and began the trek back to the McDonald’s, where all of our good trips begin.
Related post: The Diary of Ashley Spencer: You Done Good!