My husband has taken three consecutive weeks off of work this summer. Such a thing has never happened before. The result was we spent five days at the lake with my parents – during which we left the kids for a night and road-tripped to Jasper, just the two of us – then after less than 20 hours at home, we left again for ten days with his parents. It was a lot of fun, but I am definitely glad to be home again, not the least because I put on jeans this morning and had to jump around just to get them on. I have Post-Vacation Too-Tight Pants Syndrome. Thank goodness for long shirts, is all I can say at the moment. Who knew that averaging four drinks a day over a two week period would cause weight gain and bloating?

We got home yesterday, and I was a bit distressed at the state of my garden; the city had been hot and dry while we were gone, and my plants were a bit crunchy. We put the sprinkler on for a few hours, rotating it carefully around the yard, when a gigantic thunderstorm hit and we received several hours of steady rain. The garden is no longer crispy.

This vacation marks the first time ever that I have under-packed, and I shall never do it again. I packed three skorts, a few tank tops, two beach dresses, and some bikinis, along with a pair of knee-length yoga pants and some very light t-shirts. I figured the weather was going to be too hot to need pants or sweaters, and things are pretty casual on the vineyard. Wouldn’t you know, the first two days were cooler than normal, rendering my light pants-less wardrobe insufficient, AND we got invited to a fairly dressy function, to which I wore a striped beach dress and sandals dating from 2009. Never again will I travel without my usual five pairs of shoes and little black dress just in case. Packing light is not for me. NEVER AGAIN.

I was largely unplugged for the vacation, save for a few things I had to do for work. I did, however, witness outrage about the killing of Cecil the lion, followed by outrage about the outrage, followed by photo memes that dealt with the following: a) why should we be outraged by a lion’s killing when there are so many human rights violations in the world, b) photos of farm animals captioned “If I was a lion, would you care about me?”, and c) photos of fetuses captioned “If we were selling lion body parts, would you care?”

HONESTLY PEOPLE. Mass outrage and then mass outrage about mass outrage and then MEMES about mass outrage about mass outrage showcases everything that is wrong in the world today. I love the internet and I certainly do not want to go back to the days of the rotary phone and looking things up in the Encyclopedia Britannica, but this – what my friend Swistle calls The Giant Internet Hand of Spanking – is one of my least favourite things. And to top it off, there is an election coming up. Two elections, if you happen to have friends in both the US and Canada. God help us all.

I don’t know how you feel, but the prelude to an election makes me long for the days when you didn’t really know where acquaintances’ political sympathies lay, unless you noticed a campaign sign on their front lawns or a pointed letter to the editor in your local newspaper. To me, politics is just too intimate to discuss; I find conversations about elections to be awkward and uncomfortable, not unlike someone telling me about their partner’s proclivity for porn or their own fantasies of being the girl in 50 Shades of Grey. These are things that I don’t want to know, it’s information that I just don’t want to have. Just like I don’t want to hear someone’s husband’s name and the words “loves anal” in the same sentence, I don’t want to know anyone’s voting preferences, unless we are very good friends, and then it is okay but I still prefer not to talk about it. I prefer my Facebook feed to be filled with photos of pets, kids, vacations, and what you ate on the 30 Day Shred. More puppies, less politics – maybe I should make it a hashtag.



  1. The internet is great for twisting and morphing ridiculous/hilariously random things like Left Shark into even more hilarious things. The dark flip side is morphing serious or disturbing things into other things and everyone going totally insane. As much as I love the former, I have no patience with the latter. Which brings me to my despair about the coming election season. I’m not sure I’m going to make it. I have one coworker who simply WILL NOT STOP talking politics at me for the next year no matter what I do. The thought of it makes me want to run screaming from the job that helps us pay our mortgage so that’s not great. But combined with the internet in election season . . . I don’t know. I may have to go dark or move to my husband’s family cabin that doesn’t have internet, cell service, TV reception, or cable and attempt to do my job remotely, checking in only once a week (there is little question this solution will not be acceptable to my boss so ….)


  3. I’m glad “Never Again” only referred to packing and not the whole vacation, because that would be sad. I bet you rocked the beach dress with sandals.

  4. More puppies, less politics. LOVE IT. Although I do love the political process, the debates, the issues, I too can do without people telling me why my views are wrong over and over again.
    And I am sure you rocked out that beach dress. Maybe even started a new trend.

  5. Well, despite the underpacking (I was going to call it my ultimate fear, but really that’s head lice, but I can give underpacking a close second), sounds like it was a good vacation. Had you been to Jasper before? We were a little swoony over the whole place. It’s a little embarrassing. I have a feeling Jasper is going to block us on Facebook. 🙂

  6. smothermother says

    that is the cutest puppy ever!!

    and I shall remain mute on all things Cecil, Bacon, underpacking, Politics and headlice. 🙂

  7. I have never underpacked in my life – never have, never will. I NEED OPTIONS. Also, this post is like a book I read recently, where everything was madcap and funny and yet there were some wise things that completely needed to be said sprinkled in. And you in a beach dress trumps most women in an evening gown.

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