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Sunday, December 23, 2007

Making Memories

On the phone with my mother this morning:

"What's the plan for Christmas Eve, Mom?"

"We're going to the 5:30 [Mass] and then we'll probably go out and get a bite. You and Jorge and the girls are welcome to come along."

"Like last year. We're not going to church but we might meet you for dinner. Where are you going? Outback [Steakhouse] again? Is [brother] coming too?"

"No, not Outback. We went to the Cheesecake Factory last year."

"No, it was the Outback right by your house."

"No, it was the Cheesecake Factory up in Boca."

"No, it was definitely the Outback by your house. There's no way we'd drive all the way up to Boca for that. We did go up to the Cheesecake Factory with [brother] and [sister-in-law] and the kids, but it wasn't Christmas Eve."

"Oh, yes, it was. I distinctly remember the baby up and down the stairs, he was just learning to walk and I was a nervous wreck..."

"Yeah, I remember that too, we did have dinner with them all up there, but it was just a dinner. Not Christmas Eve. I distinctly remember being completely embarrassed because you were all concerned that we were not dressed up fancy enough in proper requisite red and green Christmas attire and kept taking pictures and made us open presents at the table and had to tell every single employee that your daughter and her family actually live in Australia and [niece] was busy running around the table and almost tripped a waiter carrying a giant tray of food..."

"You always dwell on the negatives. I'm sorry your memory is so poor..."

On the phone with my sister-in-law, later:

"Are you guys coming down Christmas Eve?"

"No. [Brother] doesn't want to be driving all over the place. Your mom and dad are still coming up to spend the night with us, though."

"Yeah, same as last year. Hey! Do you remember going out to eat last year after you guys all went to church together?"

"Yeah..."

"Was it Outback or The Cheesecake Factory? 'Cause my mom swears it was the Cheescake Factory and told me my memory must be going."

"We all went to the Cheescake Factory one night, but it wasn't for Christmas Eve. After church we went to the Outback down the street from your parents' house. But I don't remember you guys being there..."

She passes the phone to my brother and the conversation resumes:

"Okay. Do you remember last year, after you and Mom and Dad went to church? Before they drove up to spend the night at your house? We met you for dinner at the Outback?"

"Uh, not really, maybe..."

One more phone call, to Jorge this time, for a sanity check and to rant about why we bother traveling halfway around the world for the holidays when no one even seems to recall we were here.

2 comments:

KathyJo said...

Skip the family and come visit friends! Though I can't guarantee that my children won't tell everyone that you live in Australia.

Maureen said...

Wow - your mother sounds like my mother. Need I say more?