Against all odds, Pete and I packed the car and headed out Friday morning. As late as Thursday evening, I expected him to tell me he had to work Saturday night, but bad news never came. Traveling back and forth to Virginia exhausts me and I was afraid I might have to make the drive alone. Friday morning, I buzzed around my apartment, a whirlwind of dread and To Do lists. At some point, I began speaking in tongues.
Tata: Kmumu bikka bing?
Pete: Sure, but is that all the garbage?
Tata: Dibi coo mokmok soooooob?
Pete: I don’t remember seeing the balsamic vinegar, no.
Tata: Rurrrrow mobby tek!
Pete: Sweetheart, you don’t have a lemur.
Tata: True, but if I had one would it be in the trunk?
We were on Route 78 headed toward the Pennsylvania border before I stopped hyperventilating. This will prove ironic later but for now, I relaxed and let the radio, the man, the sunlight, and the fact of the journey under way work their magic on me. Windows wide and windblown, we talked for hours.
Pete: …we can get methanol there.
Tata: Methanol? Doesn’t that come from cows?
Pete: It’s made of corn!
Tata: It’s made of p0rn? I want the first p0rn-electric hybrid!
All things at our destination had not gone as planned. My sister Daria did not get a chance to shop for groceries, leaving us with Dad’s gargantuan stash of pasta, the neighbors’ fresh tomatoes and whatever we’d brought with us. This was also the first time Pete caught a glimpse of what happened when my sisters had both cell phones and price guns in hand. In preparation for Saturday’s yard sale, Daria, Dara and our stepmother Darla were pricing and boxing Dad’s possessions. While on Route 81, I focused on the important things.
Tata: What are you making me for dinner?
Daria: Three for a buck, like the books.
Tata: We’re bringing pie!
Tata: Pie! P-I-E! Pie!
Daria: WHAT KIND OF PIE?
Tata: Delicious pie! Two kinds of pie!
Daria: YOU WILL SHARE THE DELICIOUS PIE!
Tata: Maaaaaybe! What’s for dinner?
Daria: Remember that time I called you while I was making spaghetti and kept making spaghetti and it grew and grew?
Tata: It was like the Little Rascals cake, only al dente!
Daria: Yeah, well, now you’re gonna eat it.
Naturally, we stopped at a grocery store and bought pork chops.