Heather R. Breaux BLOG
Thanksgiving has come and gone. The relatives have packed into their minivans and are homeward bound. The only remains left from Thanksgiving dinner are probably a turkey leg wrapped in aluminum foil that needs to be thrown out and a small container of that runny oyster dressing you didn't like so much.
For the biggest turkey-eating day of the year, my fiance, Sean, and I made our way to Millard, Mississippi to visit the grandparents and decided against taking my never-can-tell-what-might-happen Hyundai.
Instead, we took the Green Dragon - his 1997 forest green Chevrolet pick-up truck that always feels like it's going 10 to 15 mph more than the speedometer reads. Hmmm ... maybe we should check that.
Anyway, the vehicle’s main purpose is that of a work truck, and it sure smells like it when you first get in.
At about 8 a.m., we head out on the highway, but stop immediately so Sean can fill up the tank, check the air pressure in the tires, get a little breakfast snack - thank goodness he didn’t pull into a truck stop and take a shower! I thought we would never get back on the road.
My grandparents live about an hour and a half away from Luling. The drive is mainly interstate and easy to navigate, but I just wanted to get there and get out of the Green Dragon.
After crossing the Twin Spans and through Slidell, we finally see the “Welcome to Mississippi” state sign and are only about 19 miles from our exit when Sean says, “Oh, we have to stop and pick up a few bags of ice, remember?”
So, We take the Picayune exit and pull into the service station in the Wal-Mart parking lot. Sean backs the truck up to the ice box and pays the attendant for three bags of ice.
Now, I’m not saying that Sean has sticky fingers, but I know that I heard more than three thumps hit the bed of the truck. He claims that he lost track counting while loading the bags. Sure he did. I suppose I’ll have to get the ice next time.
By the time we make it back onto the interstate, we also lose signal for most radio stations and can only find a semi-static country music station that keeps cutting in and out.
After a few minutes, I realize that what we are listening to is a radio station specifically designed for the true country music lover - let me just say this (with a strong country accent), there ain’t no Carrie Underwood on their playlist.
Oh, then there it was, exit 19. We pull off the interstate and are now only 4 miles from the red-dirt road that paves the way to my grandparents’ house.
When we’re only about halfway down the road I can hear Clay Boy and Red Rambler - my grandma’s two red Dachshunds - scurrying down the hill to greet us.
We pull up outside of the house and there’s my grandma in her apron heading up the final touches for dinner and my grandpa’s standing on the porch smiling and waving and wearing a bright orange vest.
Later I jokingly ask him if he is nervous about being shot by a wild pack of hunters. Laughingly, he tells me that earlier that morning he was on the back acre of his property feeding the deer.
Let me just say that he never took the vest off, wore it through the entire Green Bay Packers game. Maybe he was staying prepared for the deer’s afternoon feeding.
Thanksgiving Day is a wonderful time to spend with the family. Our guest list included my parents, my sister and her fiance Kyle, aunts, uncles and cousins.
Sean and I visited with everyone for nearly 4 hours before starting the second part of our day - driving to Biloxi to spend the afternoon with.
So, after tons of hugs and kisses, we load back into the Green Dragon and attempt to make it to the coast by way of country back roads - with no signs.
After several arguments and an hour later, we can see the beach in the horizon and know that we have arrived.
That’s right. Thanksgiving has come and gone - but don’t get to comfortable. I imagine that by the time you read this you’ll be sitting next to your fully-decorated Christmas tree counting down the days until another fun-filled and unforgettable family gathering.
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