Friday, May 24, 2002

Curse you, lime green dinosaur!

Arg. I wrote this very long blog earlier today, (of course I didn’t save it) and lost it just as I was hitting “Post and Publish.” I hate, hate, hate that. Sigh... But it’s been a few hours, and I feel ready to start over. :)

Anyway, I am here in Miami! I made it! Yay! The trip down was relatively uneventful (note the word “relatively”- more on that in a moment), and I think this has been the easiest moving in experience I have had yet. That’s really saying something, as I have moved an average of every 8 months for the last five years. But I am officially unpacked, connected to the Internet, new phone line works, cable all set, pictures hung on walls, etc.

But anyway, yeah- my dad, Bella and I drove down here; my dad with a van full of my bed and some furniture (couldn’t afford a furnished place) and I drove down with Bella the Wonderdog. She did very well, by the way. As soon as I got on a major highway like I-95, she conked out and didn’t wake up until I pulled off for food, gas or bathroom breaks.

This is actually quite remarkable, considering Bella used to throw up like Linda Blair every 7 exits or so, even with cutting off her food for 36 hours beforehand and sedatives, etc. One time, (WARNING: DO NOT CONTINUE READING IF YOU ARE EATING), and I sort of only mention this because it falls under the category of one of the “Worst Things I’ve Ever Done,” which Alissa asked about on her page.

College Roommate and Road Trip Buddy Jo and I drove (with Bella) to Lancaster to see Kel on her birthday and see Jo’s ex Draegn (Yup, that’s spelled right) who was a lead in the PA Ren Faire at the time. Bella (whom we only found like a month before) was a Puke Machine on the way down, so we didn’t feed her much in anticipation of the trip back. Well, Belle was really hungry, I guess, and on her morning walk before we left (YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED), she ate a piece of dog poop, which was really nasty. But then, even worse- Jo and I made it as far as Turkey Hill before Bella threw up. I said, you know, you go buy the Requisite Snapple, Kit Kat Chunky Bars, an Turkey Hill Iced Tea (Jo and I have a whole established Road Trip Menu), and I will clean up. But as I was cleaning up the puke, I discovered the poop Bella had eaten. I am famous for my strong gag reflex, and I ended up throwing, too. Like, a lot. So Jo had to clean up after me and the dog, and the Turkey Hill Guy (who was a Hempfield grad and used to be in gifted classes, actually, but dropped out of HACC to work at Turkey Hill) who brought out the kitty litter to soak up the puke, began hitting on her in a Very Inappropriate Way. So, yeah- that was probably one of the worst things I have ever done. (Love you, Jo! :)


But I digress....

So, anyway, the trip down here was fine. No dog mishaps, fender benders, wrong turns, or sketchy hotels, etc. However, I had a little, um, “accident” (NO, not a “Pirates of Penzance” moment, thank you very much. :) on the way down. More like a “Running into the Sliding Glass Door/Falling out of the Raft” type thing. This is such a Typical Angie Story, I can hardly believe it. I am not a real person. I am a cartoon character, I am convinced.

This next part is going sound like I am unhappy and whining. I am not. I am very happy to be here, but in order to express the full comic potential of this story, I sort of have to set the scene, as it were.... :)

Anyway, a little background... When Amanda and I were 14 and 12 respectively, we took a Gaul Family Vacation to Florida. It took us five days to get there, mostly because my dad wanted to stop at every single Civil War battlefield along the way. (They are all the same- green, quiet, clean, big field, statue of a solider on a horse, obelisk, historical marker, restrooms). On the border of North and South Carolina is this incredibly tacky, horrible Tourist Trap To Beat All Tourist Traps called “South of the Border.” There are fluorescent signs located every five miles hyping this place up beginning in Central Virginia. There are a lot of giant statues of “Pedro-” a Not-So-Subtly-Offensive caricature of a person of Hispanic heritage, mini-golf, overpriced restaurants, etc. Understandably, my parents refused to stop there.

So I decide that my dad and I HAVE to stop there this time. So we’re there, it’s awful, I am taking all these pictures of Bella and my dad in front of horrible, tacky statues, etc.

There is this big statue of this lime-green dinosaur wearing a banana-yellow sombrero, and I decide that it would be really fun to climb on top of it and have my picture taken. Of course, I am too uncoordinated to get myself on it, so I am trying to jump from trash can, and my dad is laughing this wonderful, deep belly laugh that he gets going sometimes. He decides to give me a boost, but I was sort of flopped on this thing on my stomach, and he pushes me as I am trying to reach around to grab the dinosaur’s neck.

Well, of course I fall off, but here’s the thing. I, literally, broke the 4-foot fall WITH MY HEAD, as my arms were behind me, trying to clutch the dinosaur statue’s neck. I actually heard my neck crack, which was scary. But then I realized that I could move everything, and I wasn’t paralyzed ( I had been trying to get this crick out of my neck for days, it sort of felt good actually), and I started to laugh. Well, my dad comes running over to help me. And... well... he screamed when he saw my face. You know, it is never good, when you are injured, for someone- especially someone who watched you being born via Cesarean section- to scream when they see you.

I am a mess. One half of my face is a disaster. I have three long lacerations extending from my eyebrow to near the lower part of my cheek. I have a bunch of brush burns on my forehead and cheek. My left eye was intermittently swollen shut for three days. It’s open now, but it’s puffy and purple.

I have named the wound “Barney,” because no one talks to me. They talk to The Wound. I keep thinking people are trying to make eye contact with me to start a conversation or get my attention for some reason. Nope. They are staring. I thought someone was trying to hit on me. Uh, no.

I look like the Phantom of the Opera. See, it doesn’t really hurt anymore, so I forget about it, and I don’t understand why people are looking at me. Anyway, for now I am just hanging out in my nice, air-conditioned apartment. Sigh... Perhaps I will don my cape and compose a rock opera. :)

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