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Laura Spinella

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Member Since: Mar, 2007

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Blogs by Laura Spinella

Pack Up Your Troubles and Just Get Happy
7/9/2010 4:55:50 AM    [ Flag as Inappropriate ]

Okay, shifting gears. I am going on vacation. That means after writing this blog, the only thing I plan to write is my name, scribbled on a receipt for which someone has served me food or alcohol. I say that with every intention of enjoying the next eight days, partaking in spontaneously planned vacation-like activities. The truth is I suck at vacation.
The preparation alone is enough to make me want to barricade myself in our attic. (Thatís really not so bad; our attic is a finished bedroom with a full bath) Nevertheless, itís not how one should react to a vacation, and I realize that. As all moms can relate, every inch of packing will fall to me. And do you see me busy packing? Nah! Why make sure the wash is done, suitcases readied when I can sit here and do this? Regardless, we wonít make the Mass Pike before someone yells, ďDid you bringÖĒ To which I will reply, ďUh, no. Was it your intention to brush your teeth while we were away?Ē Everyone has a different standard for vacationing. For thirteen-year old boys, I believe hygiene, or a lack thereof, is the main goal.
At the opposite end of the vacation universe, one of my very best friends just returned from hers. She and her family spent a week in Colorado at a music festival. Okay, there would be problem number one for me. The focus of their holiday was to be outdoors, enjoying the sun and the fun and the music. After about ten minutes of that Iíd be looking for the comfy chair, complaining that insects are eating me alive and, OMG, you donít really expect me to use that bathroom? Yeah, itís not what I do best.
Thanks to Facebook, my friend and her family shared their trip with all of us in real time. No waiting for those home movies nowadays. To be honest, Iíve never seen people so adept at having a good time. Really, they should do a self-help book for the vacationally challenged. Iíd buy a copy. But in my defense, and hers, my friend is a born traveler. Iíve known her for a quarter of a century, in which time she could have circled the earth repeatedly with nothing but a backpack, Birkenstocks, and a toothbrush. She has excellent hygieneóeven for a wanderer. Sheís that type, comfortable with a boardroom or surfboard. Iíve tried taking cues from her, that come as you are, and ďwhatever happened to communes?Ē attitude. Itís an enviable quality, and sheís really good at it. Going all the way back to our roommate days, Iíve tried to emulate it. Fortunately, however, you get to a point in life where wisdom kicks in. It is here you realize that you are a proud person of creature comforts, and if thereís any wild-child behavior to be had, itís coming by way of a five-star hotel and a hot rock massage.
Even if these amenities are part of my vacation repertoire, itís not something I approach with great zeal. I think writers, by nature, are routine oriented folk. But unless youíre recluse writer folk, with no one to answer to except maybe your manifesto, youíve got to go with the flow. That means come Monday, I will not slip safely inside my sunroom, a place that allows me to be one up on the world, meeting covertly with pretend people over whom I have autonomous control. On Monday I will be negotiating the Smithsonian museums. Iíll be hobbling along in my sporty new tennis shoes that, by ten a.m., will have rewarded me with a blister. I will be equally irked that I have driven five hundred miles to satisfy a boy whose happiness will be purchased via a six dollar hot dog from a street vendor. On Wednesday Iíll find myself beach bound, trading our concrete nationís capital for a sand laced bag of potato chips and dirty looks when my family realizes I didnít pack the beach toys either.
Those Facebook pictures of my friendís trip have been on my mind. Itís a challenge to post something, if not darling, that at least avoids the photo of me standing on the National Mall, yelling at my son for packing nothing but black socks. Oh, wait. I did all the packing, didnít I? Anyway, while I harbor no fantasies about competing with their excellent adventure, I want to post photographs that depict happy family fun. I know, Iíll snap candids. Well, not of us, but free spirited family types who are having a terrific time on our vacation. :)

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More Blogs by Laura Spinella
• Home Field Advantage - Thursday, February 17, 2011
• Transaction Complete - Saturday, February 12, 2011
• We Are Go For Launch - Wednesday, February 09, 2011
• And This Happened Where? - Wednesday, January 12, 2011
• December Perspectives - Wednesday, December 22, 2010
• The Show Must Go On - Tuesday, December 07, 2010
• A Drum Roll, Please... - Friday, November 26, 2010
• One Author's Eye Candy - Wednesday, November 17, 2010
• The Witchcraft of Writing - Wednesday, November 03, 2010
• The Eureka of Cumulative Research - Thursday, October 14, 2010
• There's Something Odd About Us - Monday, September 20, 2010
• Summer Whine - Saturday, September 11, 2010
• This has Nothing to do with Pitbulls - Thursday, July 29, 2010
• Artistry & Bad Brakes - Monday, July 19, 2010
•  Pack Up Your Troubles and Just Get Happy - Friday, July 09, 2010  
• Character Analysis 101 - Sunday, June 27, 2010
• Ticket to Travel - Thursday, June 17, 2010
• Bound for Publication - Monday, June 07, 2010

Tales of a Clear, Dark Night by Jansen Estrup

The heavens, we are taught, have always inspired awe, tradition, even salvation. Why? What did our ancestors see there?..  
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