San Antonio trip (May 2008)

It was overall, pretty bad. It had some redeeming moments, but GOOD GOD, if I could do it all over again, I wouldn’t! Ah well, live and learn, right?

Let’s start a few days before the trip. You have to hear it all together, to get the true awfulness of the whole experience.

Thursday:
Early Intervention comes to evaluate the boys. I wasn’t feeling great, still recovering from a sinus infection. I haven’t eaten breakfast, but I have to get to the airport after the appointment to pick up Kristina. After EI leaves, I eat a couple of frozen waffles and run out the door with the boys.

On the way to the airport, I’m feeling awful. Still thinking it’s just low blood sugar, I drive on. When I get to the airport, I park and wait. I stay in the car. I feel very very ill. Finally, Kristina arrives. I make her drive. We’re taking the boys to George’s school so the staff can meet them before school lets out.

Feeling very ill. We order a sprite at a drive-through. Doesn’t help at all.

When we get to George’s school, I pick a Walgreens bag off the floor of the van (thank goodness I’m messy, eh?) and barf into it. A lot.

Immediately, I feel 100% better. Whew!

The rest of Thursday and most of Friday is uneventful.

Friday:
Kristina, Teresa and I go to a wine bar. We order a cheese plate and have a few glasses of wine. Nothing major.

Look how innocent they are! Thankfully, Tee never got sick:

Kristina mentions she feels icky and hungry, so we go to Gordon Biersch to eat dinner. We’re seated in the loud, hot, sticky bar area. Yuck. We order dinner. K and I get garlic fries with our sandwiches. This “restaurant” puts a pile of minced garlic (cooked) on top of the fries. It’s pretty nasty, and I like garlic.

K starts to feel nauseous.

Saturday, midnight:
Kristina barfs.

Saturday, 2 am:
I barf.

Saturday, 4 am:
We both barf.

Saturday:
I decide I’m feeling better so I go to my facial appointment. A moment of amusement when the facialist tells me to disrobe. “Isn’t this just a facial?” I ask. Yes indeed. Who knew you get nekkid for a facial? Anyhoo, whatever. I’m in no state to argue. I get under the covers and practically pass out. Lovely facial.

It is a hot, hot, hot day. Kristina lays on the couch all day. Miles projective vomits. So does Oliver. George is sick.

We’re thinking it’s probably not food poisoning. Hmm.

We’re supposed to be packing for our trip. Our friend Ren comes over with her daughters. I venture out to have lunch with her and her girls and the boys. Ugh. It’s so friggin hot.

By Saturday night, we’re not sure if we’ll be leaving the next morning.

Sunday:
We wake up feeling MUCH better. We manage to get the van and the boys packed up and on the road by 10:30ish. Galveston is 6 hours away, and I naively think we can be there by 6 pm. Maybe 6:30.

We stop at a Cracker Barrel in some rural area for lunch. The boys are doted on by the waitresses.

Mmm, fried okra!

There is crying. A lot of crying. There is diaper changing in strange places. There is a lot of poop. I think the boys have diarrhea because of the stress, which makes me feel indescribably awful. There is more crying. Two hours before we get to Galveston, the boys are just screaming, and there’s nothing we can do. So we drive. And it is hell. We joke that they will stop crying 30 seconds before we get to my cousin’s house.

30 seconds before we get to my cousin’s house, the boys stop crying. They don’t fall asleep or anything, they just stop.

Little shitheads.

We stay with my cousin and her husband that night. We vow to get an early start the next day, so we’re not driving the 4 hours to San Antonio while the boys are cranky.

Monday:
We leave Galveston at 10. Sigh.

We stop for lunch at a gas station/McDonald’s. I change diapers in a deserted parking lot. On the ground. (On a pad.) There is crying. I am supposed to be in SA for a dinner meeting at 5. Surely, 7 hours is plenty of time, yes?

Not so much. At 5, I have to call my colleagues and tell them I’ll be missing the dinner. We get to the hotel around 5:30.

Tuesday:
Not a bad day. Well, Monday night was hard. It’s stressful knowing you have three babies that wake up crying in the middle of the night, when you are in a hotel and trying to stay quiet for the other guests. Sleep is elusive. I have to get up early for meetings and stuff.

We go for a walk along the Riverwalk. It’s hot.

Me and the boys at the Riverwalk:

When we get back to the hotel, we take the boys for their very first swim. They seem unimpressed. I was afraid they’d scream at the cool water, so I’m relieved, though I’d hoped for some kind of reaction!

Miles is nonplussed:

That night, there’s a welcome picnic for the conference. The boys are cranky, but are being passed along, so they’re not crying.

Wednesday:
I don’t have to be at the conference until after lunch, so we decide to go to an authentic Tex-Mex place for lunch. So we get in the car and drive. All is well, and we eat lunch.

Immediately after lunch, K starts feeling bad. Sore throat and headache. I have to get a few things at BRU, and of course I get in line behind a woman paying for a Pack N Play with change. No lie.

We get back to the hotel and Kristina crawls into bed and the boys take a nap. I go do conference stuff.

That night, Kristina is very ill. I go have dinner with some colleagues and take two of the boys with me.

The boys go to sleep, but I get up with them whenever they make a peep since K is sick.

Thursday:
I wake up absolutely exhausted. Too tired to even put in my contacts. (They just weigh my eyeballs down.) Kristina is still sick. That afternoon, we have an outing to a ranch. It’s a really nice event, but it’s about 30 miles from the hotel, so we take the boys in the van while everyone else takes a bus. The boys cry half of the way home, and Kristina is crying too, out of frustration and sickness.

A cowboy, roping my coworker’s son Bobby:

The ranch. It really was outstandingly beautiful:

Bobby feeding a bull:

My boss burping a baby.

We determine she has strep throat, and she a doctor to prescribe her some antibiotics.

Friday:
Kristina goes to pick up antibiotics, first thing in the morning. She’s starting to feel a little bit better, I think. Or not.

Last day of the conference. That evening, there’s a banquet and the boys are passed around. Nice. Gives us a break! I really enjoy the entertainment at the dinner – a mariachi band and dancers.

We’re dreading the ride home the next day, because we were doing it all in one day. We leave the banquet early to get some sleep. Yeah, right.

Oliver charming Kristina so she’ll still be friends with me:

The event planner feeding Oliver:

Saturday:
We get on the road at 7. Not bad, but not as early as we’d hoped.

We get to Houston at around 10. We stop at a Target so Kristina can get some Dayquil. When we leave, I notice one of my tires is low. Ugh. It was also low the day before. Ugh. I reinflate it with the tire pump George put in my car. I’m terrified the rest of the way home we’re going to have a blowout, but I’ll save you the suspense – the tire doesn’t give us any issues.

We stop at IKEA. Kristina watches the boys while I quickly shop. I’m throwing things into a cart, whatever I see that catches my eye. It’s fun. I get some toys and bibs and random things for the boys.

While on the road, Kristina and I agree that we are both surprised that we are still friends at this point. Earlier in the trip, we were having our doubts. Thank goodness the boys would give her a huge smile or a laugh whenever things were really bad. (Even when they were at the worst of their screaming, if you just looked at them – which involved climbing into the back of a moving vehicle, so we tried not to do it too much – they’d stop and smile and laugh.)

We get back on the road. The trip from SA to NO should take 8 hours or so, if you didn’t have babies. 13 hours after we left SA, we got to NO.

Whew!

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