I spent half the day in bed sleeping off stomach issues and flu-like body soreness before picking up my sister and her son to go celebrate my mom for Mother’s Day. Meanwhile, my wife helped her grandpa complete the patio project.
We met my parents at Rose Canyon Cantina & Grill, tucked away in Trabuco Canyon seemingly in the middle of nowhere. If you’re familiar with Cook’s Corner – aka a perfect filming spot for Sons of Anarchy – it’s right near there. If you ever wanted to go to Charming, take the drive.
The bar and restaurant filled up quickly with a mix of young and old celebrating the end of a week. Everyone was white, which gives you an idea of the flavor of the food – mild. It definitely needs a zesty boost. The atmosphere, however, is not as bland. Patio tables surround crooked trees dressed with white lights, horses strut up the adjacent dirt road and life seems slower. Simpler. The salsa’s pretty good, so go for drinks, appetizers and deep-fried ice cream and skip the entrée.
After grubbing the three kids played out front on a rock fountain to burn off energy. Two young women on horses stopped by to let the toddlers ohh and ahh over the horsies before clopping away.
After hugs and kisses good-bye the twins and I loaded into our minivan, rolled down the windows and moon roof and cranked up the stereo as we weaved through the canyon on a gorgeous night.
“Hmm,” I thought to myself, about ten minutes into the ride home. “It really smells like horse shit.”
I must have driven by a fresh load. We are in the country after all. Five minutes later I felt my right sandal stick as I lifted my foot from the gas pedal.
Weird. The same thing happened when I stopped applying the brakes and moved my foot back to the gas. I sniffed, bracing myself for a huge dose of crap. Nothing.
Now, my sandal is sticking more and more and I can imagine smushed horse dung smeared all over my shoe, the floor and the pedals. This is disgusting. I wanted to look to make sure but it was too dark and the curvy road was too dangerous to take my eyes from.
I called my wife on the way home. I’d need help bringing the kids inside as I hobbled on one shitless sandal. She was still at her grandpa’s. Crap. Gas station. I’ll go to the gas station and use their paper towels, their soaped up squeegee and their trash can. Brilliant.
We pulled off the freeway. “Gas?” the twins inquired. Yes, you observant little bugs. But we’re not getting gas. I parked the van, turned off the ignition and gently lifted my foot from the brake, fearful of spreading shit on the carpet, door or my leg. The white flourescent lights illuminated my sandal as I twisted my ankle to get a good look at the damage. I wondered if it’d be brown, yellow, green or a mash-up of the three.
It was gum. Just gum. That initial stank wasn’t in the van after all. Best news ever.
You know what doesn’t go well in 90 degree weather? T-ball and toddlers. Neither Gray nor Ellie cried, unlike a few of the other players, but at one point Ellie begged me to carry her around the bases and Gray just refused to even hold the bat in his final plate appearance. Next Saturday is the last “game.” The forecast is 89 degrees. I smell a repeat.
While everyone napped I wrote another post at Bugs & Cranks.
At night we met my wife’s family at Super Mex in Lakewood for a belated birthday celebration for my wife and I. Super Mex is the polar opposite of Rose Canyon Cantina – all flavor, no atmosphere. I enjoyed a “beerarita” which enthralled Ellie.
We drove back to my wife’s grandpa’s house for desert and presents and I left with a glorious BeerTender. I felt my liver slightly twinge when the twins ripped open the wrapping paper.
Sunday was weird. As mentioned before, our church is closing as a result of financial difficulties. Sunday was the “series finale” as our pastor themed it, and it didn’t disappoint. Old, familiar faces returned for one last reunion, there was laughter, tears and suspense-filled drama. I won’t get into the details as to protect other people’s privacy, but it sure beat the hell out of the Seinfeld finale. My wife alerted me to the fact that I haven’t really given justice to the impact Christian Life Fellowship made on me and what I’m feeling. I suppose at some point in the near future that’s a topic to address. Just not in this space.
And of course, it was Mother’s Day. The first Mother’s Day without Jax for my wife. She could probably fill 2,000 words with her views of Sunday, but she’s all private like and would probably spell Tearz with a “S.” That’s no fun. But it’d be infinitely more heart felt.
It was a subdued celebration. We met her mom, her brother and his girlfriend at Buca di Beppo where my wife said she almost punched out an elderly lady with an arm sling in the parking lot because she couldn’t wait 30 more seconds for my wife to finish packing up Gray and the restaurant supplies before slithering into her car. I love it when my wife gets fired up.