Twice today I have been randomly taken back in time, whisked away by one of those memories you don’t even recall you’ve forgotten. Seriously, not the ones you vaguely remember and wish you could call to mind; those completely beneath the radar which resurfaces entirely at once.
First, a Red Robin commercial – that I’ve seen an insane amount of times – sent me back to either this or a neigboring restaurant in Solano when Josh, Ezzie and I returned to the US on April 1, 2006. I have no idea of whether I blogged about this before but I can almost guarantee I didn’t, what with falling into hibernatory slumber for days after. We’d flown from Manchester to Paris, walked immediately to another gate, departed and flew straight through to San Fran. With two children (we had our nephew-son in tow), two car seats, two diaper bags and my laptop as carry-ons. Starting off, Ethan had to be carried, kicking and screaming by one of the resilient flight attendants. So. We started off with a bang. And apparently I speak French while drunk but not so much while tired. So, my husband, who’d just finished all of one year (albeit in the UK which is quite a difference) completely took over answering questions. (Fun fact: he now speaks none; I now speak like I’ve taken remedial French…ten years ago.) Anyway, so we finally get to SFO and on the inside I’m bursting with excitement (hadn’t been to the US in seven months), on the outside I’m bursting into tears. That’s. Kinda how I get when I’m insanely tired. Having noted the number of months since we’d been here, I don’t think it’s unreasonable that my Dad and Josh’s parents came to pick us up. (Plus, at the time, they didn’t know we were cutting our UK stint two years short; we’d both been pondering it for the exact same reasons but hadn’t had the “simultaneous confession” conversation.) Anyway. They were way too excited. We had to let them determine who got to ride with whom. We answered several times, “no, we’re not really hungry so much as blindingly tired” and that we wouldn’t like to stop halfway back to Sacramento to eat or swap chaffeurs. … Yet somehow we ended up at Red Robin (or at one of the restaurants within view of it) in Solano. (If anyone’s interested, there’s a pre-marital date attempt that ended in Solano. It was so romantic-comedy cliche, we could hardly stand it.) So, using the jaws of life, the four of us are pried from the respective cars. (Another fun fact: our parents were driving the same car, different color.) I “wake up” at some point inside this restaurant and actually start crying. For you see, there are few times a grown person will cry in the absence of death, blood or legal proceedings. I’ve discovered sleepiness of this magnitude is one of them. I can’t explain the lightheadedness. I wholeheartedly admit it. I started tearing up. I. Honestly thought they were playing some cruel joke. They were all beaming and giggling and asking us questions that – due to the fact that we couldn’t really grasp that we were back in California – seemed totally pointless. We were made to order (apparently the two babies were fresh-faced and hungry… oh that’s right, they didn’t carry their own bags or seats or selves) and when mine got there, I mustered the strength for a single bite before literally falling asleep for several minutes while they ate. At some point, my food was boxed and at some point I somehow got back to the car and the next three days are lost to me. The end.
Moral: Don’t. Do this to people! Me at Travel Tired (on a scale of sleepiness) = hopelessly sensitive and with a demeanor mimicking clinical depression.
(I feel like I should have a picture of this but…yeah, so here’s a pic of the journey in the other direction! The second we got off the plane in Manchester. The welcome to Bangor was a pretty nasty internal experience too…long explanation…)
Well, the second memory was inspired by a comment-convo with Cait and involves my fall quarter of my freshman year in college. But alas, my head is still in story number one. Another time then.