Grumpy has returned safely from Florida after a week’s break from his, “Taxi-driving-Mr. Mom-Jack-of-all-trades-honey-do- list” role of retired old guy. It was a great week of both sun and fun and bungling and stumbling which, in turn, gives Grumpy plenty to tell you about.
So, here’s PART TWO in his Travelogue for your tea time titillation and reading pleasure.
TECHNOLOGY: The Idiots Pressing the Keyboard are not the SOLUTION they are the PROBLEM
On the first day of our drive Grumpy, using forethought and good logic, booked a motel room in Florence Ky. Having nine month old grandbaby Ryder along for the trip dictated our driving schedule. The Grumpy caravan needed to stop when Ryder demanded it. My daughter printed out his schedule.
It looked like this:
5:00-6:00 am: Mama Milk
9:30-10 am: Mama Milk
2:30 pm: Mama Milk
3:00 pm Mushy Muck (Veggies and fruit)
6:30 pm Mama Milk
7:30 pm Mushy Muck (Meat and veggies and fruit)
10:30-11 pm Mama Milk (Bedtime)
You will note that little Ryder has a later bedtime than Grumpy. However, the little guy does have frequent naps during the day. In some regards Ryder and Grumps are on the same page.
Nevertheless, the Grumpy’s pulled into the Hampton Inn in Florence KY., at around 11 pm on Friday night. Booking ahead affords you the perk of walking into the lobby and simply picking up the keys. That’s why Grumpy uses EXPEDIA.CA – prepaid rooms = no hassle.
We unloaded our gear, including the Smurf’s spouse, the BMX Dude’s, very valuable trick bike, which was brought along to explore skate and bike parks in Florida. You can imagine the scene as we trudged forward –luggage, baby carrier, and bike in tow.
The Grumpys crowded themselves into the elevator and rose to the third floor. The entire crew was giddy as can be, chortling, laughing and hooting all the way. Baby Ryder was all in with his giggles and smiles.
Ever the teacher, Grumpy tried to calm the troops, reminding them that others might be sleeping, but to no avail. Grumpy’s son, the Phenom, described this behavior succinctly on the drive home when he said, “When we get out of the little Hyundai it’s like watching the unloading of a clown car!”
Anyway, we finally stood before Room 313 with electronic pass card in hand. The Smurf swiped it once, then she swiped it twice and then she swiped it once more. The little green light did not flash telling us that –THIS CARD SUCKS.
Of course, the Grumps had to give it a go. He, as the leader of the pack needed to apply a “take-charge” direct curse and swipe methodology.
“The #%$#@ card won’t swipe. What the %@$# going on here?”
Each of the Grumpys tried that card in turn, all the while filling the hall with loud guffaws, while Grumpy continued to mumble his full lexicon of expletives, of course.
Suddenly, and unexpectedly a trembling voice from inside the room said, “I think you have the wrong room.”
Grumpy imagined that poor soul, peeking through the peep hole with 57 Magnum pressed against the door, scanning the occupants of our clown car and thinking – is this a home invasion – are these the crazy Canucks I’ve heard tell of?
Why do they have a bike and a baby? And, who is that mumbling old geezer wearing a toque?
“Ethel, get under the bed it’s LOCK AND LOAD time! The Canadians have invaded. It’s freaking March Break for those clowns!”
After apologizing profusely, and avoiding all profanity, Grumps looked at his crew for direction. The response was not spoken, simply assumed – “If you are going to act like you’re in charge – you and you alone are heading to the lobby to straighten this all out.”
The night manager was very apologetic. Knowing this was the U.S. and the state was Kentucky he knew he could have had gun play in his hotel. Have you ever watched the series about Eastern Kentucky called, “Justified”?
“The person taking the booking must have entered the data wrong and scanned the wrong room onto the card,” The manager said. “I am very sorry.”
Once again it wasn’t technology that failed. It was the hillbilly pressing the keys that messed up.
“Geez boss, I always gets my twos and my threes messed up! I ain’t that good at math, see. ”
All went well after that; the Grumpy’s settled into room 213 just in time for little Ryder to get his fill of Mama’s milk.
As an aside, on the trip back to Canada we had another pass card incident in Knoxville, TN. Once again we were loaded down with gear so I handed the envelope with the cards to the Good Wife as we walked to the Clown Car to unload.
In the 25 steps from the lobby door to the car those key cards disappeared as if David Copperfield had enacted one of his classic illusions.
So, who was the actual culprit?
Well, it was the purse the size of a duffle bag the Good wife carries. This purse is loaded down with just about everything you can think of.
“Honey, you wouldn’t have a bandage, would you?”
“Hmmm, let me look!”
“Yes, I do. Hmmmm, let me look.”
“You wouldn’t have a thing-a-ma-bob-thing-a-ma-jiggy, would you?”
“I think so. Let me look!”
Searching through that purse is like looking through a full box of loose watch parts at a yard sale. You see, it’s the proverbial needle in a haystack kind of exploration.
So, when the key cards went missing and my wife said, “I think I threw them in my purse!” Grumpy knew there would be a long wait before the family actually got into the room.
The Grumpys found themselves, once again, standing in the hall laughing and chortling as the Good Wife rifled through that purse in pursuit of that card. As more and more items were withdrawn, the assembled family wondered, “What isn’t in that purse?” and “What are those vice-grips used for?”
On the way up to the room, Grumpy asked the BMX Dude , “Which is the purse and which is the diaper bag?”, as the Good wife walked ahead of them. Her purse is actually bigger than a good sized diaper bag.
Well, the cards were recovered eventually and the Grumpys were able to catch some well-deserved “ZZZZZZZZZZZ’s”.
It seems as if each new purse the Good Wife buys is bigger than the last one. I expect on the next trip to Florida the only luggage she’ll need is her “Bad-ass ginormous humongous handbag of generous proportions”.
And, the Phenom will just love that.
“Hey, mom, have you got my basketball?”
“Yup, I think I put it in my purse! Let me look!”