Monday, April 26, 2010

I Hear Loud Drunk People

Sarah and I decided it was time for our annual or by-annual or tri-annual, (or as often as our husbands will allow) hotel weekend getaway. It is a glorious time where we bring all kinds of snacky foods and our favorite pj’s and head for the hotel. The plan is to make it the whole weekend without leaving the hotel room. We watch movies, we read, we talk, we sleep, it’s glorious.

Our weekend started off nicely. We went by Whole Foods and got lots of yummy foods and most of them were healthy and even those that weren’t, were still organic, so you know, less guilt! And as a side, those were the best tasting organic peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies EVER!

Our first day passes gloriously uneventful. We ate, we talked, we watched movies, we serupticiously watched the social interaction going at the pool below us, it was heavenly. We eventually got tired of all the relaxing and headed to bed. Because I had had coffee later than usual and because I’m not 20 anymore (darn-it!) I couldn’t sleep. I lay in bed awake for about half an hour. Right as I was about to drift off, I was startled by sudden loud voices. Many, loud voices. They were getting off the elevators, loudly, at 1 am. I waited for them to make it down the hall to their rooms so I could try to get over the shot of adrenalin their jarring voices shot into my system, and go back to sleep.

The voices continued. Loudly. I waited. Finally, they started moving from the elevators. I listened as their voices got even louder as they passed right in front of my door. They were so loud it was as if they were standing at the end of my bed! Then, much to my horror, I heard a door crash open then close, the very next door.
“You’ve GOT to be kidding me” I mumbled. If it were possible, they were even louder in the next room! I laid there for a while, hoping they would settle down and go to bed. Um, no. After listening for a while and counting voices, at least 7, I was pretty sure they were not going to bed anytime soon.

As I listened to their conversation, and it was not eavesdropping because the people in China could hear their conversation, I got more and more irritated. Also, I learned quite a few new words. And I had to control my overpowering urge to go over there and box their ears or wash their mouths out or send those boys to a corner! Sheesh! Do they kiss their momma’s with that mouth??

Finally, I could not take it anymore. I got up and turned on the lamp. Sarah was also now awake. She made it longer than I did due to her earplugs, but eventually the noise of these partiers penetrated even Sarah’s super strength ear plugs.

I called down to the front desk. I told them of our partying neighbors and asked if there was something they could do. They said they’d send up security.

We waited and finally security knocked on the partier’s door. Security had to knock twice to be heard over all the ruckus. Finally we heard the partiers responding to the security guard. We didn’t hear the security guard because he was speaking in normal, 1 am tones, the partiers were still speaking in ‘we’re at the Club!’ tones.

We heard the door shut and the slight ding of the elevator telling us the security guy left. We heard great guffawing from the room next door, then we did NOT hear quite.

I called back down to the front desk to tell them their ‘talking too’ had not worked. The front desk offered to move us. Fabulous. Just what I wanted to do, gather up all my stuff and wander around the hotel at 1 am. But it was very clear to Sarah and I that these people were completely trashed and being quite was a physical impossibility at this point. We had two options, to wait till they drank themselves into a stupor, or move. We chose the latter.

We packed up our stuff, threw on our robes and slippers and were just about to head out the door when we heard their door open and the ruckus spill out into the hall. Should we go out there? Should we wait? They’re pretty darn drunk, and they’ll know it was us that complained. We decided to wait. Well after several minutes they didn’t move so we called down to security again to escort us to the next room.

As soon as security got off the elevator, it got quiet again. It seemed they had gone back into the room. The security guy walked us down two floors to our next room. Now let me mentioned that this security guy did not inspire confidence. To start off with, I was bigger than him. He was this little slip of a guy, he smelled of alcohol himself and he was unarmed. Seriously, I’m more menacing than this guy. But at least he had a walkie so he could call down for help if the need were to arise.

We stepped off the elevator and once we were in the foyer, we heard the elevator doors to the next elevator come open. It was an elevator full of our partiers! Seems they were moving their party to another room. Kind of them I guess, but still they were so loud they could wake the dead. I looked at them, 8 people, 6 guys and 2 girls. 20 something. They halted in their steps when they saw us. It was obvious what was going on. They did not get off the elevator.

Sarah, the wee security guard and I made it to our room and the guard said goodnight. We put down our bags and were about to hop into bed when we heard it…AGAIN! The partiers other room was, wait for it…in the room next door.

“I don’t think so!”

I am sorry to say, 1 am Trish appeared. She is very grumpy, impatient, and irritable. Just ask Dave. “I am going to ask them what room they’re in so we can move again to somewhere they’re NOT” I say.

“um, are you sure that’s a good idea?” says sensible Sarah. “Maybe we should call the security guard again.

“Yeah, I don’t think so, what help is he, he does not even have a gun. I’m better armed that that guy.”

So I swing open the door, surprising the 20 something partiers (and Sarah, I think). They all stop in their tracks. They had a giant cooler full of what I can only assume is more beer on a luggage trolley. They had the door next to us open and half of them were already in the room.

“Excuse me” I say in a 1 am Trish tone. “Could you tell me what rooms you all are in so we can move elsewhere? I don't mean to kill your fun, but we need to get some sleep.”

“Um” says the drunk guy spokesman, “No…ma’am, we’re all quiet now. Really” large hand gesticulations, and beer sloshing out of the can, “you won’t hear from ush no more, we’re all done making noish” slur slur, slosh, slosh.

Whatever. I try again, speaking in clear even tones as to a very small child. Keep in mind all the other drunk guys are standing there, unmoving, staring like a deer in headlights.

“Is. That. Your. Room?”


“Are. You. Staying. In. That. Room?”


“Thank you, that’s all I need to know. Enjoy your evening, gentleman.” And I shut the door. Sarah looked a bit astounded because 1 am Trish is much more daring and confrontational that daytime Trish.

We call down and to the astonishment of the front desk, asked to be moved, again.

Once the manager came up, and heard the ruckus emanating from our next door neighbors she understood. She explained to us that there was a wedding party there and they were part of the wedding party. They had several rooms in the hotel. The manager assured us that none of the wedding party was on floor 3. They moved us to floor 3.

Sarah and I finally fell into an exhausted sleep at 2 am.

We slept in till almost 11 the next morning. When we woke up, we joked about how our partiers must be feeling this morning. They were probably still in their beds holding their heads in pain!

We opened our window to resume or pool-people watching. Lo and Behold, our drinkers were at the pool! How was that possible? I had not had a drop of alcohol and I felt like I had a hangover from all the middle of the night hiking! And these guys were down at the pool, drinking, laughing, yelling. Wow, they must be professional drinkers!

We stood and stared, and pointed and talked, trying to decide if these really were our midnight partiers, how was it possible? Then, much to our shock, one of them looks right at us and waves! THEY COULD SEE US!!! I was certain the windows were tinted, but apparently the sun was just right to allow them to see us. We waved back and then quickly moved away from the window. Then we fell on the bed and laughed our heads off!

I am happy to report that we did not run into the 20 something partiers again, of course that might be because we did not leave the confines of the hotel room till checkout time the next day. But that was by design, not because we were scared of the crazy drunk people. Really!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Tim does it again.

I don't care who you are, that was a solid performance. Even his critics must agree.

Well Done TIM!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Gala and Boy #2.

This is Bob and his date, B. B is the sister of Will date, S. I loved B's outfit! So her, with those boots. Adorable! See how they're all matchy-matchy! Bob even had a corsage made with red ribbon. And yes, if you look off to the left, that is Will being a spaz in the background.

This photo cracks me up. I hope they'll always be friends no matter where life takes them. If that is so, then I will feel like I have done my job well.

Such handsome young men. Where'd my little boys go....sniff, sniff.

Here's the formal, parents-with-graduate photo. Sir D and Will look lovely!

And now the silly photos begin. I love these boys. They are so funny!

Here is Will's group of friends from the co op and from his youth group. A parent couldn't ask for a better crowd for her teenager to run with. I love these kids.

This is so funny. They look like vampires with their collars up like that!

And here we have Bob breaking a long held tradition of NON dancers in the family. The tradition has gone back generations. WEll done, Bob. WEll done!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Mr. Sir

This year, for Ann’s birthday, we decided to have a camping party. Ann very much wanted to invite 20 of her closest friends and have them all come camping with us. Because I am sane, I told her NO WAY. But I did tell her she could invite 15 of her closest friends to come spend some time with us at a campsite during the day. So the idea for Ann’s camping party was born.

We immediately made reservations at Cedar Hill State Park. When the day came, Sir D got up early and went down to the park to pick out the campsites that would best suite our purpose, i.e., near the playground where there is room to run and 15 screaming girls would not be out of the ordinary.

That evening we were to meet D and R at the park to let the camping weekend begin. Lo and behold, when we get there we are told that not only do we not have any reserved sites, but we don’t even have any reservations at all. WHAT?

In the interest of keeping this a novella and not a complete novel, let’s just say that Sir D spoke to them and a solution was found. They put us in a part of the park that was closed for the off season. We got a complete section of the park to ourselves. Bliss. Screaming girls will disturb no one now!

Friday rolls around and the party begins. We picked up all the girls at the house and ferried them all into the park. We had egg toss, egg relay races, egg sprints, murder in the dark, assassin, capture the flag, sardines (sorry parents for the chigger bites. It was not my idea to hide in the creek bed!), decorate your own cupcakes, and I don’t even remember what else. We did not, however, roast marshmallows as I decided 15 girls wielding long sticks with hot melting marshmallow on one end, over an open flame, seemed a bad idea.

When the party was over and everyone was sufficiently sugared up, we hopped in the car to go back up to the entrance to the park for the girls to meet their parents. We waited on the ‘exit’ side of the parking lot. There were already a few parents there waiting and they told me that the park was not making them pay to come into the parking lot to pick up their kids. I was happy to hear this because I didn’t really want to walk all the kids up to the entrance because it was dark up there, and frankly, I was tired! So we waited for the parents to come.

The parking lot is just about empty. The only people coming and going at this point were the parents picking up their children. I would say it was a quiet night, but there were 15 sugared up pre teen girls there so quiet is not the right adjective.

Once most of the kids were gone, I notice Robin and Tara driving up. I waved at them and they made their way in to where we are. Without thinking of the severe consequences that awaited them, they drove 20 feet the wrong way, into the ‘out’ side of the parking lot. They had not even parked their cars before lights were flashing. The Park Ranger/Warden Guy was waiting. We shall heretofore call him…Mr. Sir (Thank you David for the Holes reference!)

Mr. Sir walked up to Robin’s car and demanded ‘license and registration’. He then made his way to Tara’s car. Tara had gotten out of her car at this point. Mr. Sir walked up to her and said, in a rather unkind tone, “What kind of crazy driving is that? Do you even know how to drive? Are you even old enough to drive?”

Tara stood there, eyes wide, shocked. She was waiting for him to laugh and indicate he was joking. He did not laugh. Tara did not respond. She simply handed him her license. He then told her in the same tone to, “Get back in your car.”

Mr. Sir went to his truck, lights still flashing like this is some kind of drug bust, and began to run their information.

Sir D walked up to the open window of the truck to see if he could help out. He talked to Mr. Sir in kind even tones asking him if he was really going to ticket these ladies. He explained that they were there only to pick up their children that had been at his daughter’s birthday party.

Mr. Sir said they had violated traffic laws. Sir D agreed but pointed out that it was a PARKING LOT and it was empty save their own children. Mr. Sir said that laws were laws and there were consequences for breaking them. Dave agreed but suggested there was also a place for grace when mistakes were made. Dave also mentioned that these two ladies did not have State park passes and perhaps he was putting his park in a bad light. Maybe this was not the impression he wanted to leave of his park on these ladies. Mr. Sir asked if Dave was threatening him. Mr. Sir apparently did not appreciate Sir D's input and told him to go back to his car.

We waited around long enough to see Mr. Sir get out of his truck, walk up to Tara’s car and gruffly tell her to ‘come with me!’ Once Mr. Sir had both Robin and Tara standing on front of Robin’s car Sir D decided we’d better leave. He was concerned that Mr. Sir would write them a ticket just to spite Sir D if we were standing there watching.

Once Sir D and I left, Robin and Tara were left alone in a dark and empty parking lot with Mr. Sir and his silent sidekick. Mr. Sir stood there in front of Robin’s car and harangued the two ladies for several minutes about traffic laws and obedience, and driving skills or lack thereof. Then, he made these ladies walk a good 30 yards away from, and out of sight of their cars holding their young children, to the entrance of the park. He pointed at the ‘Do Not Enter’ sign and asked them if they could read it. When they responded in the affirmative, he made them both read it out loud to him. The then harangued and harassed them some more, all the while their children are sitting unattended in a dark parking lot wondering what happened to their mothers who were taken away by an angry, gun tottin’ Game Warden.

Before he would tell them where their fate rests concerning the $500 ticket, he first demanded to know who ‘that man’ was who threatened him. Once he found that information out, he told Robin and Tara he would write them a warning. They would not have to pay, or show up in any court, but it would go on their record. The then told them that if they wadded it up and threw it on the ground he’d ticket them for littering. Because we know how homeschooling mom’s are prone to littering.

For the rest of our stay at Cedar Hill State park, the warden and/or his sidekick drove by our campsite often. They told us to move cars out of other campsites parking spaces nearby, even though we’d paid to have the extra cars enter the park and that entire side of the park WAS CLOSED except for us! We were told that we had not paid for the last night of our stay, and that we had 30 minutes to get out or pay up. We had been told no less than 3 times when we checked in that we were paid in full. To put it bluntly, the State Park staff harassed us because Dave stood up for Tara and Robin.

This man, Mr. Sir, was on a power trip the likes of which I’ve only seen on sitcoms. Dave was able to ascertain his full name and badge #. He also was able to get his supervisors name and that of his supervisor’s supervisor.

The man was a bully, plain and simple, but he picked the wrong guy to try to intimidate. The way Robin and Tara were treated, and requiring them to leave their children unattended for at least 15 minutes in a dark empty parking lot, is simply unacceptable. Not mention the way he spoke to them! Dave felt certain that if he could have recorded the way Mr. Sir spoke to Tara and Robin, Mr. Sir would be out of a job. Sadly, Sir D does not yet have and iphone.

As the great Lord Acton said, “Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
I think this may be the case with Mr. Sir, but worry not campers. Mr. Sir’s days as a bully are numbered.

He picked on the wrong guy!