Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Weekend Get-Away .....

Just a few notes on the just-concluded long weekend spent shuttling between Carson City and Reno, Nevada.

Chapter One

In Order To Be Hotel Security, Your “Fun Gland” Must Be Removed

As we pulled up to the hotel for the first time in a calm, quiet Carson City early Friday morning, we could see the girls bouncing up and down waving frantically to us from their second story hotel window. I saw my father-in-law in the background gazing down at us as well. The girls knew we had arrived. They were just as anxious to see us as we were to see them.

Up to the room we went. Multiple bear hugs and kisses later and a good night from the FIL who made off to his room, the littlest one decided to come down to the car with me to help carry a few things up. As we left the room for the car, I spied a couple of security personnel heading our way.

I turned to my daughter walking beside me and asked “Do you remember what room we're in?”

“Yes!” came the confident response: “Room 210.”

As the security guards passed, one of them turned and asked “Did I hear her say you came from room 210?”

“Yes, you did,” I told the guard as I looked over my shoulder.

“Because … we're headed there right now,” I was informed.

“Why is that?” I puzzled.

“It seems there's been a lot of noise coming from that room” he explained. “The room below 210 called and complained of pounding going on from above, so we were just on our way to check it out.”

“Very interesting, because I just got to the room,” I confessed to the guard. “We just rolled in … we just got here.”

I walked the short distance back our room, security guards on one side, my daughter – wide eyed and taking everything in - on the other.

As my wife answered the door (I hadn't a key yet), she was surprised to see all of us standing there. I explained the situation. She mimicked my few sentences to the guards about just having arrived.

“Have you guys been making any noise?” I asked both the girls in the presence of the guards

”We just jumped up and down when we saw your car and waved at you,” the eldest revealed.

And then it dawned on me: Their exuberance was the culprit. Apparently, midnight trouncing about is a bane to the gambling contingent on the lower floor that decides to turn in early.

I addressed the security goons and apologized. Naturally, I blamed my (non-present) father-in-law for the commotion.

And all was well with the world.

I promised them I wouldn't swing from the light fixtures a few hours hence in respect of our neighbors sleeping habits … but all bets were off come the morrow. I was met with a stare from one guard to which I offered not only a “Good evening!”, but a hearty “See ya tomorrow … same Bat time, same Bat channel!”

Off to the car we went to retrieve luggage.

Good times.

Chapter Two
The Cat Toes're The Best Part

There were fourteen of us. Kids. Grandparents. Friends. Cousins. Outlaws all. So, when it came time for dinner, choosing a place was always “a blast”.

Chili's was a disaster the previous evening. (Is there ANYTHING good on that menu?!?) We were strewn between two different tables (granted: not the establishment's fault), my wife's burger arrived raw, the atmosphere was claustrophobic and the two year-old nephew I sat next to was demanding to be played with the entire dinner session.

So, Saturday night it was off to a Chinese hole-in-the-wall buffet my father-in-law spied on the way back from Reno.

I was one of the first to get to the entrance of the place. Right there at the front door, an announcement glared back at me. “Lost: Black & White Cat.” As my wife approached, I thumbed her gaze toward the flyer taped to the glass.

“Look what's on special tonight,” I told her. She made a face.

I held the door for her as she entered.

I took an exaggerated deep breath. “Yup. Smells like tabby to me!” She chuckled a bit while grimacing.

I opened the door and let my father-in-law and brother-in-law in on the joke. They rolled with laughter.

Despite the fact the place was a hole-in-the-wall – and the fact steaming cat wafted interestingly through the air – dinner was quite tasty …..

Good times.

Chapter Three
Shoulders Are Made To Bleed

I promised the girls I would swim with them all afternoon Saturday.

We dove for quarters for what seemed like hours on end. I tossed the eldest in the air 'til my arms hurt. The youngest leapt off my shoulders until I had permanent gouges depressed into my shoulders. I could've sworn I saw blood oozing from them round about the 100th leap. I made my father-in-law pay for hiding a sunken quarter with his foot. And I kicked a nineteen year-old's ass by drowning him every chance I got when we went head-to-head after the same coin.

Good times, indeed.

Chapter Four
Carson City Casino Caf├ęs're Cold, Y'Know

As she came out with everyone's breakfast Sunday morning, the waitress announced she brought extra toast ‘cause the cook burnt more than he toasted. Everyone looked at each other at that unusual comment, but no one said anything. (A rarity.) We had so much sourdough toast at the table we could have formed a sourdough maze and charged admission.

Ten minutes into breakfast, I felt the room go cold. Downright fridged.

And then I saw the reason why.

My brother-in-law hadn't been served and he was starting to slow burn. You could see tendrils of steam radiate from beneath his baseball cap (which he wore at the table). As the waitress came by to check on everyone, my sister-in-law asked his missing food. It seems she never got his order. Or he never gave it. Or sumpin'.

She apologized profusely and told him she would have a plate for him in a matter of a minute. He gushed icily that it was fine … he didn't want anything after all. He was in a molded funk, for sure.

He shifted into high gear – high asshat gear, that is – and made a big 'ole scene. The poor waitress didn't know what to do, so she simply retreated to the kitchen.

I offered half my omelet to him, which he refused. My wife hushed me.

I told him there was plenty of toast and I was accosted with Superman heat vision eyes from several of my (out) in-laws.

I mentioned out of the corner of my mouth it could be worse … it could be Carson City cat hash and gravy he'd be eating. Several Smucker’s orange marmalade packets were positioned to come flying headward if I didn't shut up post haste.

The girls just giggled.

At breakfast, there were good times, too.

Chapter Five
Puking Hinders Not The Double Down

My sister-in-law complained of a stomach ache the night before. Remedies were exchanged. Charcoal pills were offered. An early evening's turndown was inevitable for her and she bowed out as gracefully as her green tinged face allowed.

Come the morning, she was at breakfast ... but understandingly didn't eat anything. She had slept miserably. She was grouchy and had bags beneath her eyes. The green glow was gone from her cheeks, replaced by palidness.

Half an hour later, as everyone was moving their luggage to the cars, she was mysteriously absent from the group.

It so happened I had passed her in the casino while checking out; she was sitting at the blackjack table, merrily tossing chips about in front of her.

Back at the parking lot, my brother-in-law was grumbling … still peeved about the earlier breakfast, but he'd moved on to something different to moan about.

“Yeah … she's too sick to pack, but she ain't too sick to plant her ass at the blackjack table,” I was informed.

Good times at the back end of the weekend as well.

....................... Ruprecht ( STOP )


  1. Your family knows how to roll!! Good for you for making the effort to take such a trip! I bet everyone had a great time (minus the puking) you know?

  2. What fun! Love the Rupe family travelog. Seems there was something for everyone ;-)

  3. Ah, good times. I lived in CC briefly. Thanks for reminding me why I left. Glad you had a good time.

  4. Sounds like a hell of a weekend.

    And Kudos to you for spending that much extended family time. lol

  5. sounds like a blast Rupe. It's great that you take the time to enjoy your family!