Successfully convinced my father that it was actually okay to do something HE wanted to do today, so we all loaded up and headed for the Naval Air Show in Corpus Christi, about an hour from the ranch.
These redneck social experiments...air shows, car shows, guns & knife shows, monster truck rallys, small town parades and rodeos, and random parking lot carnivals...will forever remind me of my father, which is why I still find myself so drawn to them as a parent, I suppose. And I know Amy is completely baffled whenever I announce excitedly that the Guns & Ammo show is at Cow Palace this weekend, but the small town girl inside of me that aches for cowpatty throwing contests and mud races is the same one that allowed me to fall so head over 4--inch heels for a redneck of my very own.
So, except for the fact that I'd had ZERO sleep between checking in on Saia and trying to make the little king comfortable (Chago doesn't typically adapt well to new environments) -- and the fact that they stayed up til MIDNIGHT with their cousins for their first-time-ever slumber party -- and let's just nevermind the fact that all week long I'd been seriously jonesing for my Starbucks and had been without chai or even a remote B-version for, oh, let's see, 6 FREAKING DAYS NOW -- but except for that, except for all that, I was good to go.
Click the PLAY (>) button below to watch the NAS Air Show slideshow.
But, man, the oh-so-warm salty breeze coming off the gulf. That forever Lonestar sky. And even the bar-b-que joint at the end of the day was all just so well choreographed, I couldn't have asked for a better culmination to our trip.
Until my family pulled an all-nighter with me.
And we laughed. And joked. And it was easy and fun and perfect.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DADDY! WE'LL MISS YOU SOOOO MUCH!!!