Saturday, July 25, 2015

Day 11 dispatch from the wine and underwear department

We may have hit the point of kind of pretty much all hating each other this morning.

OK, we didn't all hate each other.

The kids just kept being themselves, and as such were intermittently enraged about: the application of sunscreen; the big wind; locating the Elsa and Anna "babing" suit; the lack of Angry Birds; the wretched fact that the sea has so much salt water.

So really only some of us hated each other.

OK, so Betty didn't really hate anyone either. And apparently neither did Nick. He was just resentful and enraged.

So maybe only one person was actually hating.

It all starts with the apartment I chose, which, if we're being honest, sucks in a number of ways. Yes, it is right on the beach, in a great location. And it has a terrific pool. But it has no AC and even with fans the bedrooms are hot, and the beds are uncomfortable and the sheets are awful and nobody is really sleeping much and that makes everything extra hatey.

But this is a whole nother story. And also at the root of many things everything right now. So when something else goes wrong, there it is: I chose it. I did this. Me.


Our struggled-for internet suddenly stopped last night. We knew it was about to run out, and that we needed to put more money on. So yesterday Santi came over and helped Nick load 50 euros onto it, which apparently would allow us a crazy amount of internet. Like, we could basically stream circus porn until we left kind of internet.

Except that last night it stopped.

Nick was trying to work and then asked if I actually was streaming circus porn because he had no bandwidth. But no. There was just no internet.

Ya no mas. Porque, Orange?

Dios sabe.

Nick tried to figure out what was going on but we are in Spain and everything is in Spanish and then the page wouldn't load and then he kept reading it to me and I was all fuck just show me the goddamn page so I can see if I can understand and there were words I didn't know and we both had no idea.

We had so much money in our account! Where did our internet go?

Also, if I hadn't chosen a sucky apartment we wouldn't be so hot and we'd have internet. So there was that.

Neither of us had answers. Just rancor.

So we went to bed angry and Nick woke up angry and I knew he would so I awoke loaded for bear.

Neither of us are people to just be mad in a corner. Oh, no. When one of us is upset the other has to participate in the choler cha-cha.

So there he was all big and glaring around and then I handed him an angry coffee and we got into this stabby spiral of vexation and it was all very terrible.

And, as it turns out, when you are on vacation together, you are so very together. So OK, you signed up for sickness and health, and yet it starts to feel like til death do you part might ought to come sooner rather than as much later as your plane ticket might suggest.

Because there you are, so fucking together and you don't have very many other places to go. Plus, you want to be together. You just want to be happy together, goddammit.


So I flounced out of the apartamento of rage, recycling in hand, and headed to the free wifi (pronounced weefee) at McDonald's to find an Orange number that Nick could call for help. Ayuda!

It was 8:45 am and I got a coffee while I waited to connect. There was a guy in a swimsuit getting four beers.

Rock on, youth.

Anyway, I found an English-speaking help number, and What'sapped Nick, who called it, and by the time I returned from buying bread and an 8-litre bottle of water (hand to god, no exaggeration) it was done.

Apparently the conversation went like this:

Nick: You've turned off my internet. Even though I put 50 euros on my account yesterday.

Orange guy: Yes, you have 50 euros of credit.

Nick: So why did you turn off my internet?

OG: Oh! Did you want to use it for your internet account?

Nick: Yes. That's what I bought it for.

OG: OK. I'll attribute it. You know, in the future you can just do this on the internet.

Nick: Not if you shut my internet off.

OG: You have a point.

So we had internet. And still.

It took us quite a while to come down from The Incident. We went swimming all glarey and angry-polite and each-other avoidey. And let's not pretend that kids make any situation less stressful.

Today I was told that quite a number of people get divorced after going on vacation together.

I forgot to ask if they tend to be Spanish or American.


Fortunately, this afternoon we went out for Santi's birthday lunch. You know how sometimes you just need something to snap you out of a mood?

We talked to other people, ones we really like. Nick ate a large piece of meat. There was lots of delicious food. We smiled and laughed and truly had a great time.

Nick made me laugh so hard across the table and it reminded both of us that actually, we like being together. That we made a good choice in each other.

These people--these people being my nearest and dearest--might drive me completely fucking crazy (and let's be candid, I need no help) and yet there's nobody I'd rather swelter with. If I'm going to spend too much time with anyone, I want it to be them.

Just, maybe, with a little AC.


  1. If you are just about getting divorce because of traveling, I'm just about getting divorce because we are not traveling. Yes! I downloaded the papers, call my mom to send me some money to run away and the whole family out cry. We are back into the marriage counseling. How about that!

    1. Oh, I'm sorry. I hear you. It is all so damn hard. I really want to travel, I miss travelling so much...but honestly, staying home is easier. If I could travel alone like I used to, it would be magical! Or if Nick and I had the freedom to travel just the two of us. But that's just not a possibility. I don't know if we'll go anywhere again for quite a while.

  2. My daughter went on a vacation to CO. in June. Her first one with her husband and mother in law. Both of whom she loves. dearly. They were going to take the 3 year old but I insisted she stay with me. I knew. 12 hour drive. Shit. FUCK. Shit! People you adore turn in to people you abhor. I told her weeks before the departure to enjoy the excitement and anticipation because it frankly is the best part. Maybe we should all book vacations, get all ready, buy all the things (save receipts!) and then cancel at the last minute. Ahh. home. Peace. I send you cold vibes. In a nice way.

    1. You're a terrific mama. So good of you to keep the 3 yo. A 12 hour drive would've been hell, and yes, people you love become hateful with so much time together and hard circumstances. You might be right. All the excitement and anticipation, the counting down...And your cold vibes worked! A chilly wind blew last night and the day is cooler. (By cooler I mean less broiling.)

  3. Sorry things are sucky....I found we hit the hate each other mode in HI, because we had no buffer. In LA we had Disney (the happiest place on earth) and in DC we had all the amazing AESers (plus our Australian friends) but in HI it was just us, all the time. And we got on each others nerves. That said, as a family, we tend to get along better on vacation. No work or school stress, relaxed schedule etc. In fact, we are already planning our next two (domestic) does get easier as the kids get older, I promise.

    1. Nicole, you all had such a big trip! It's so impressive that your kids held up so well for so long. I think the buffer would be tremendously helpful. The time we spent with our friends was super fun--we all like them so much and Jordan and their son could be aggressive BOYS together.
      Nick finally admitted that he was having a very hard time with the lack of structure. He doesn't, in my opinion, relax, and he works almost all the time, and was going a little crazy with so much wide open time. He seems to have settled a bit, and that's making all of us more relaxed.

    2. I think D might be Nick in a few years time. He is no good without structure. Me? I am all about the spontaneity. Nick just needs to take more vacations so he can practice relaxing, And real relaxing not "work-but-in-a-different-country" relaxing :)

    3. I love no structure but am asp terrible at imposing any in myself. So I do best with other people's deadlines. :) Nick would love to. Will have to make it really big, change profession, or retire for that to happen, unfortunately.

  4. This is so good and so true! You are making DC sound extra nice this summer 😅

    1. Hahaha! I will say, however, that after the monsoon that was summer in DC before we left, I embrace the relentless sunshine of Spain!


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