The Family Truckster as Adventure Guy’s boss dubbed our lovely gas-guzzling Suburban pulled out of Suburbia early yesterday morning for our annual trek to visit my father-in-law in Galveston for the 4th of July. We made a brief stop at Canton, Texas’ World Famous Dairy Palace to meet my parents and pick up Soccer Boy who’d been visiting with them for a few days on his own. And the World Famous Dairy Palace? Definitely deserving of its reputation. My taste buds–though not my arteries or my diet plan–thanked me for ordering the steak finger basket and finishing off my meal with one of the 32 Blue Bell ice cream offerings.
Though I dreaded the Houston and holiday weekend beach traffic, we managed to time our arrival fairly well, especially since we took advantage of the HOV lane to miss a great deal of the congestion. We pulled into the beach house drive in plenty of time for dinner, a swim, and some fabulous sunset views from the deck.
And now, comes the more challenging part. Things can be tense between Adventure Guy and his dad, and more recently between his dad and me. Because last year during this visit, I just couldn’t get past his generally poor treatment of Adventure Guy. Though I tried to hide it, my feelings obviously translated into aloofness. We heard by way of the family grapevine that FIL thought I’d done nothing but read or talk occasionally if the topic was myself. Ouch! The reality centered on my trying really hard not to say something I’d later regret. Plus, I have this blog if I want to talk about myself all the time!
I’ve done some thinking, though, and I realize that I need to do what Adventure Guy has done, and just move past all the drama. His father is who he is. It’s unlikely that at this point he’s going to change. We bring the kids down here once a year, and he makes absolutely no other attempt to see them, either at our place or his, any other time. Some years, we do see him in the fall if we both happen to be at a football game the same weekend. But all that’s his choice. The reality is, he’s missing out on having a relationship with his grandkids–who are great kids if I do say so myself.
So this year, I’m resolved that those great kids and I are going to have a great time here this weekend. I’m going to be down-right chatty. I’ll seek out FIL’s thoughts on a wide variety of issues, none of which involve me. I’ll take deep breaths. And hopefully, this will mark the beginning of a thaw between the two of us.
LSM reflected in the beach house window at sunset