Home again, Home again…

It’s all over but the crying. We packed up the cabin on Day 9, and left to go to Cornelius, NC.

Cornelius is just outside Charlotte, NC, and is where my sister, Elizabeth and the other Krajniks live.

The sentimental reason?

Why, The FIFA World Cup Final, of course.

Technically, we had one more hour until we had to check-out at 10:00 a.m., but it’s two hours to Cornelius, and the game started at 11:00 a.m.

You do the math.

  1. I fell 💤 asleep the moment I got in the F-150. When we all got there, everyone was there but The Masters,
  2. and I could have stayed with them all for two more hours of kinship,
  3. but I chose Cali’s bed instead.
  4. Finding a spot on her bed was challenging, though,
  5. I even had to move the girl’s suitcase off her bed,
  6. and some other items I don’t remember,
  7. just to clear off enough space to get my body in a hole in the mess.

Cali, I love you, but you’re a slob.

I’d been awake for two days by then,

  • first messing with this site on a technical level for hours through the first long night, (after being up most of that day),
  • then giving up in despair and frustration, and beginning to write the blog post during the day on my iPad because I couldn’t see the iPhone screen anymore,
  • then getting so distracted by the tech glitches I had created, I found it hard to write anything coherent,
  • then going to Antler Village at The Biltmore for a wine tasting and then ice cream with the last seven people remaining the next evening,
  • then writing the last of the blog post when we got back, taking me well into the next night.
  • Then, I discovered that since I hadn’t logged out of the site on the iPad before we left, it had logged me out and miraculously reverted back to “normal.”
  • But I told myself I was going to do this last post before attempting any more “site improvements.”
  • And, of course, the first thing I did was go into the inner workings, and start to put widgets in,
  • But, I managed to stop myself and start writing,
  • Even though I still can’t figure out the image editor,
  • And that’s why the picture is so incredibly large.
  • It is, however, a true picture someone took on one of their hikes,
  • Probably a Krajnik, since they take an inordinate amount of pictures.

The Masters left suddenly on Thursday. Eliza was sick all day Wednesday.

A stomach bug was making its way through the cabin, hitting people one by one, starting with Cali.

Ryan Masters, my eldest, said he was leaving early because he had some work to do in their hometown of Lynchburg, VA.

But, I blame Cali. That’s right, Cali. Don’t deny you brought this plague into the cabin!

It probably didn’t have anything to do with the fact that:

  1. Ryan is a writer with A.D.D., and,
  2. having so much confusion with so many people around was messing with his concentration.
  3. He couldn’t write.
  4. Now that he’s graduated, he has to keep getting published (he’s been published before) to get paid.
  5. To get published, he has to write.
  6. To write, he has to be able to concentrate.

We kept making him cook.

Well, he loves to cook!

But, unless he writes a cookbook, we weren’t helping him along his career path any.

He just got his 2nd Masters degree, an MFA in Creative Writing from George Washington State University in St Louis, MO, (he won a fellowship, and they paid him to go), his first Masters degree is in English from Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA, where he works as an online Adjunct professor.

But he’s got a family to feed. He needs to write and sell his writing. Creative Non-Fiction is his forte.

Any agents out there reading this? He’s an excellent writer.

Anyway, I was sad he and Georgie left and took the grandkids away.

I needed more pictures! I waited too long to start taking pictures of ‘Iah and Liza, though I’m sure The Krajniks took some they can send me.

That is one picture-taking family.

Then Cali and Stella had to work, so they left on Saturday.

At least I still had Matthew and Greyson (and Ben, we love you, too, Ben).

After the game, which you probably know France won over Croatia 4-2, (although John thought Croatia was the better team, but then again, he bought Germany and Spain jerseys. He was so sure they’d be the last two teams standing, even before all the World Cup action began…tsk, tsk, tsk).

I’m sure that comment is going to be on the evaluation.

As you know, the evaluation determines whether or not my contract will be picked up for another year of marriage to John.

It begins promptly at 9:00 a.m. the day after our 27th anniversary, which is on July 27.

Who knows? I might be a free agent come 10 or 11:00 o’clock in the morning on July 28th.

Sigh 🙄, I’ll have to lose weight and pretend I give a damn about my current date’s interests.

And since I never leave the house, I’ll have to try online dating, which sucks.

To paraphrase Forrest Gump, “online dating is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.”

I’ve always hated dating, even when I had a waistline and hair. (I’ve still got a little hair).

If the evaluation doesn’t go well, I’m hiring a good lawyer with John’s money, and going for half his income for X number of years.

And, I’m keeping the ring.

He may have given me a budget, but doing all the research that went into actually picking out the biggest, sparkliest, prettiest, highest quality 💎 diamond said budget could buy was all me.

He couldn’t tell you what “the 4 C’s” of diamond buying were if you threatened to rake him over burning, hot coals by his nipples.

Having said all that, I ❤ love him with all my being, and I know he loves me, too.

He’s a funny guy with what some would say is a tragically warped sense of humor.

But that describes the whole Poutas family. We’re all akilter when it comes to what we think is funny.

  • Usually, I am the straight man,
  • the butt of many a joke.
  • “Childish and Pedantic,” is a crowd fave.
  • But, I take pride in my role, and know that they’re wary of me because,
  • I’ve been told, I “go straight for the throat,” when I feel it is in my best interest to do so.

Critically, they can’t hold a candle to me. I was taught by the best.

My mother, God rest her soul, could rip your beating heart out of your chest and show it to you before she chewed it up and spat it back into your palm, the one you, stunned into submission, willingly opened for her.

Then, she’d blame you for the bloody mess that dripped from your numb fingers onto her clean floor and say “now looka whatcha you do. Go clean!”

And you would accept that and start mopping!

She was pure-blood S. Korean and never tried to rid herself of her heavily accented English, although she lived in the U.S. with my country-fried, Southern, dad from age 19 until she died of a stroke last year at the age of 75.

Elizabeth and I tell people we attended college at Watssa Matta U?

I learned hard-core criticism at the feet of a master. We miss her and her critical self.

So, France beats Croatia 4-2 in the Final.

  • John is wrong again,
  • though he’ll tell you he’s never wrong (thank God he didn’t buy a Croatia shirt, is all I have to say about that, and you can believe that comment will be in the evaluation),
  • they wake me to say goodbye to John and me (John will leave me if I don’t get there fast to hug & kiss everyone),
  • and to Matthew, who was leaving also.
  • John readies himself for his “mission from God” trip to FL, Specs on, keys out.

Ben and Greyson didn’t leave when we did. They had at least a four-hour journey back to Wilmington, NC where they both attend UNCW, but maybe they were staying the night with The Krajniks to extend the party one more night.

Being the good mother that I am, I didn’t think to ask.

  • Well, they’ve slept over at Liz’s before,
  • they’re both 22 and capable of making at least small decisions, like when to leave,
  • and Aunt Liz cooks.

Matthew lives in downtown Charlotte, so he had a whopping 20 minute drive ahead of him.

He texted us to say, “I have arrived safely, and whew! What a long drive!”

Pffft, Matthew. That’s what I say to that.

John and I, however, had a ten-hour drive.

  1. I was against driving to NC to begin with.
  2. I wanted to fly into Concord regional, which is near where Elizabeth lives, and rent a car for the week.
  3. Plus, John puts on his “mission from God” Specs when driving long distances.
  4. Stops only for gas (once), and a short pee break.
  5. I thought he was going to have a coronary when I wanted to sit down to eat at Denny’s when we were driving from Orlando to Cornelius, a three 1/2 hour shorter journey than the one we were about to embark on.
  6. Heaven help you if you had digestive issues (which I did coming from Orlando, so maybe the milkshake I had at Denny’s wasn’t such a good idea. I keep forgetting I’m lactose intolerant).
  7. He sat in the parking lot of a McDonalds, tapping the steering wheel the whole time I was in their bathroom when I finally got him to pull over for me.
  8. Yeah, the milkshake was a bad idea.
  9. It was the exorbitant cost of a large rental car (one big enough to haul food to the cabin with) for the week that swayed me over to John’s way of thinking about driving up and back.

So I prepared for the long journey home by taking all my nighttime meds, the ones that make me 💤 sleep,💤 and sleep soundly.

  • Said “goodnight, John.”
  • Adjusted my car seat,
  • turned on the seat massage,
  • put on my slippers,
  • situated my “my pillow” just right,
  • put my blanket within reach,
  • and went to sleep.

John stopped exactly once, for gas and a pee break, just like I knew he would. I managed to hop out quick to potty and buy two candy bars.

Then, I scarfed down one candy bar, readjusted myself, and went back to sleeping.

Suddenly, we were home. It was 11:30 p.m.

I had managed to sleep almost the entire trip.

Of course, “made husband drive the whole way home,” will be in the evaluation. There will, however, be no mention of the fact that:

  • he won’t let me drive when we’re together,
  • because he’s a bit of a control freak,
  • and it scares him to let me drive.

I’m sure, though, that the fact that I made those last two comments (“called me a control freak,” “insinuated that I was a scaredy 👖 pants”) will make it into the evaluation.

He will make no mention of the fact that he never lets me drive when we’re together anyway.

It would take away some of this St. John vibe he’s got going on in this lopsided evaluation.

I’ve made this post waaay too long, so it’s time to release you back into the wild. Fly, be free!

And remember, it’s o.k. to trust somebody else to do something for you once in awhile.

Trust does need to be earned, but once it is earned, learn how to let go of whatever fear you might still be carrying, and let someone help you.

In AA and NA they say “Let go and let God.” If God isn’t your bag, pick another power higher than yourself, and let go to that, pick anything.

It’s freeing.

PS: I looked on my Amazon account to see where that stylus went. It says “delivered to cabin’s mailbox on July 9th.” Remember the mailboxes way at the bottom of the hill that were locked and numbered, and I said I neither knew their mailbox number, nor had a key if I did? Yep, one of those mailboxes.

PPS: There’s $10 I’ll never get back. I hope the owners enjoy their new stylus. I’ve ordered another one to come to me here in FL.

PPPS: D’OH! What bonehead would order…, in the middle of nowhere…,  then expect…, Why?? I can’t even speak right now.





I am a freelance writer who makes words beautiful, exciting, persuasive, concise and alive, if a little loopy sometimes. I was born in S. Korea on an army base, and traveled the world from the age of 10 months into the present day, so I know a lot about many different topics. I've spent the last 22 years (and counting) raising three children into responsible young adults, and that is no mean feat. I've been writing for as long as I can remember: fiction, non-fiction, creative writing, poetry, creative non-fiction and all that falls in between. I'm a great researcher. I am also easy to work with. If you've got a topic that needs to be written about, I can write it. I've been married for 26 years to the same man, and that's a whole topic unto itself! If you need a freelance blogger or writer, hire me. I won't let you down. Contact: vicky@vickypoutas.com, Twitter.com/@vickypoutas, Instagram: @vickypoutas, LinkedIn.com/in/vickypoutas, Facebook: www.Facebook.com/vicky.batson.poutas