Saturday, November 24, 2007

Does this bus go to Duluth?

Oops, sorry Tom.

These things happen.

We just got back from our annual pilgrimage to Duluth (get it? "pilgrim"age - rowr) and boy was it nice. As usual.

But you know, some things never change. And that's why I'm going to re-imagine this post I wrote 2 years ago about the very same trip.


* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

We just returned from our Thanksgiving visit to Duluth. We had a great time as usual and the food was fantastic!

Now that I'm "blogging" (a term, coincidently, also used to describe how your body is feeling about 1/2 hour after your third course of Thanksgiving food), I get the opportunity to jot down a few thoughts as they relate to this experience.

Coming home again
I always feel a burst of nostalgia every time I come over the hill by Spirit Mountain. Seeing this view below always gives me the warm fuzzies
(click to enlarge).

Then, when I get to the bottom of the hill I get a double dose of fuzziness when I look back up at Radio Park and see the fourteen or so TV and radio towers blinking away. When I was a kid I always imagined they were the landing lights for extraterrestrials.

Big stinky dog
One of the benefits of staying at mom and dad's house is that you always get to share your space with the family golden retriever Sunny. Even though he is the nicest and sweetest dog in the world, he is also 15 years old and has the breath to show for it.

This wouldn't normally be an issue except for the fact that he is most in your face and most in need of attention just at the point of when you're about to take a bite out of your sandwich. One good pant from old "Sunner Bunner" and your sandwich ain't seeming so appealing anymore. On the flip side - we do have a fairly trim family!

My old bedroom
Another special benefit of staying at the folks is sleeping in my boyhood bedroom - with my wife (wink wink, nudge nudge). Of course since the old bedroom is directly across the hall from Mom and Pop I can guarantee you there ain't nothing going on in there.

Now if I could just get THEM to have the same respect! Just kidding of course, ewwww!

The poppies
Much like the scene from the Wizard of Oz, being at mom and dad's has this strange affect on me. For some reason whenever I'm there, I become overcome by sleepiness and cannot seem to sit on the couch without falling asleep. I don't do that at home or anywhere else so I can only assume it's an environmental issue specific to their house.

I've speculated that perhaps it's the altitude, but then 1427 feet is not really that high - although all the empty oxygen tanks littered around their front yard could be a sign.

I've considered that maybe they have a carbon monoxide problem and even whined enough about it over the years to the point where they went out and bought one of those really expensive digital detectors. That wasn't the problem - but they needed one anyway so I don't feel bad.

Radon? Tested. None.

So, if it isn't any of these things what could it be???

Maybe it's not that complicated. Maybe it's just that fact that when I'm there I feel relaxed and "home." Maybe it's the perfect combination of comfortable surroundings, good food and the love of my family all around me that just makes me all warm and cozy inside - so much so that it melts me to sleep.

Or, maybe it's because the air inside the house has been poisoned by their very own canine air exchanger, and all we're left with is the toxic remains of what old bunner-breath leaves behind.

Hey unless you've experienced it personally, don't discount this theory!

Added by request...

Big (really freaking old) Stinky Dog


Anonymous said...

That seems a bit harsh.

Heather said...

It is funny how the holidays seem to sometimes be the same one over and over...although with young kids you can tell the difference by how long it takes before someone spills.

Anonymous said...

Hey----you only have to smell that Sunny breath a couple three times a YEAR!!!!

Anonymous said...

Stinky dogs get more leftovers.

Julie Pippert said...

They do have minty doggie biscuits and...doggies shouldn't have bad breath. It could be a gastro or teeth issue. I mean, you know, spoken as nothing more than a doggie lover, not a doggie doctor.

Very nostalgic. My mother's house used to make me sleepy too...and I think you're right: because I felt at home and unpressured.

I imagine it will come again when kids aren't so little. There is no relaxed with the little kids.

Using My Words

Jeff and Charli Lee said...

sunny - If only you knew.

heather - You're right - we haven't had a good spill in years!

mom - Yeah, three times too many.

bill - You mean from the food we won't eat because we've lost our appetites? Exactly.

julie - This dog is WAY beyond minty biscuits, trust me on this one. And now that he's 17 years old (I wrote that 2 years ago) I'm quite sure he has every tooth and gastro issue a dog can have. Plus a few more we don't even know about.

Anonymous said...

We did spend $200. to have his teeth cleaned. Dog heaven will solve his breath problems.

Windyridge said...

serotonin in the turkey?

Mom Thumb said...

We just got back from Minnesota, for fun! We boarded our 13 year old dog at the vet, who called us in MN to say three of her teeth fell out, three more needed to be pulled, and the remaining needed to be cleaned. So maybe her breath won't make us gag and die. At least for a few weeks.

EQuestrian said...

Someone said this page was good. She was right.

Ed said...

Hey wait a this like regifting?

Gale said...

It sounds wonderful, smelly dog, boyhood bedroom, sleepy times, and both parents. You are very lucky.

Anonymous said...

WOW Gale you hit that right - both parents.... We are so grateful to have both Bill and Lois that it makes the stinky dog even bearable...Charli, (daughter in law)

Windyridge said...

Equestrian, that someone was me! Now Jeff, Equestrian found this page because I sent it to her on Stumbleupon. You would love SU seriously. I have found some of the best sites ever thorough it. And I have met some fantastic people. You develop friends that tend to stumble great content and it's just a win win situation. Plus you will also as an aside, increase traffic to your own site. Anyway I added you as a friend. Check out my stumbles. It can be a little hard to figure out the site so join the SU help group. They are fantastic. And you can ask me too of course. Warning: It can be a real time drainer and addictive.

yellojkt said...

That is a big old dog. Can't tell about the stinky from here, but they do sell doggie toothpaste. Sounds like the perfect stocking stuffer.

Anonymous said...

was someone french kissing the dog?

bon bon said...

oh good. i had to check the comments to see if Sunny was still with us two years later. don't tell me otherwise as i'm immediately in love with any dog once i know it's name.

Anonymous said...

that was a wonderful trip down memory lane, Jeff. WAY better than my own, which would involve driving through the smoggy and/or foggy San Joaquin Valley in order to stand all day in my mom's kitchen to help cook and/or do all the dishes.

loveloveLOVE that your dog is still a presence -- stinky breath notwithstanding. 15 and counting is, in this dog lover's book, a very good thing!

glad to know your holiday was so wonderful -- also grateful to YOU for the WONDERFUL POST you did for the Snark today! : )