Road Trip to Leavenworth – Take Three: No Substitutions Please

Vacationing with my parents can be a hoot. Not only do they like to do fun things like try on funky hats, dance in the streets, or laugh at my jokes, but they also try out fun beverages, eat fancy food, and stop for coffee breaks when whatever shoes I’m trying to break in are killing my feet. I love that on these vacations I get to mock my dad, especially when he puts sunglasses on inside a restaurant and says, “Hey look. I’m cool now.” Or when he unzips his pants at the kneecap to make shorts out of breakaway pants at a patio table at a restaurant. (This has happened in the past but did not happen on this particular trip to Leavenworth. It’s rainy, ya’ll.) All the good stuff like this happens on the first and second day of vacation. But once the ‘rents get used to a place they’re vacationing, they switch gears. They start to talk to old people about American history including wars and women’s suffrage or they learn about the history about Leavenworth or why people moved to Leavenworth twelve years ago. I know I should appreciate these conversations more. The “why I moved to Leavenworth” thing actually really interests me, but the extra commentary about why one of the waitresses sons is dumber than the other one is just unnecessary. Avoid eye contact, ‘rents! They won’t tell you their life stories if you seem busy doing something like writing in your journal or uploading photos to instagram.

I know. I’m horrible. It’s important to connect with people that are different than us, but yesterday was a challenge. My parents talked to everyone in every kitschy shop we went to, sometimes for over half an hour. My mom and I were sitting on a bench waiting for my dad when she finally asked, “What’s he doing?” and she went into the mini shopping mall area and found that Pops was still chatting with the old lady at the music box store. I looked in the music box shop and was reminded of the music box I always wanted but never got when I was a kid, but that was it. I had no desire to buy a music box or open every music box like I would have at age six. What would be the point of that?

We three (Pops, Ma Bunn, and I) are a good group of travelers. We usually get along great. We are flexible. We don’t make other people do things that the others hate and we can compromise and be chill when something doesn’t interest one of us as much as the other two. Though I complain about how long my parents talked to the old people yesterday, it didn’t really matter. I got to go into the fun shops I liked. I got coffee. My parents played cards with me and I got TWO glasses of Gluhwein from a cool winery downtown. But we three have very different tastes. I like to sit around and write a bit on vacation. Pops likes to eat rich food and talk to people. And Ma Bunn likes to do it all: write, talk to people, walk, buy new accessories, have Gluhwein, drink coffee, go back to her favorite shop three times to decide on one item she wants to buy. I’ve realized in my 24 years (yes – I am starting to lie about my age) that you can’t do everything on vacation. It’s best to make sure you do the things you most want to do and hope that you fit more in as you guy. So – I write, take photos, and upload all my cool stuff to my social media profiles. Vacation = Success!

Our tastes also vary with food. It was unusual last night when my parents ordered the same meal at dinner. More often, I’m eating chocolate, Ma Bunn eats bready things, and Pops rolls his eyes at us and waits for full meals at fancy restaurants.

Our breakfast yesterday were like this:

Pops ate the traditional Bavarian breakfast: German sausage, two eggs, and rye toast.

Ma ordered the Bavarian breakfast with an English muffin instead of rye bread.

And I ordered the Bavarian omelette with fresh fruit instead of the rye toast and hashbrowns.

My dad hates the way we order breakfast. He claims that when he and I open our own restaurant, (We’ve been talking about this since I was a grade schooler.) he will have a menu like in the movie My Cousin Vinny. The choices are simple: breakfast, lunch, or dinner. You can’t substitute. You order what you get and you don’t complain about it or you can pay and leave. If you refuse to pay, they’ll just call their cousin, the sheriff.

We’re not perfect people though. We have opinions, tastes, and we wear boots that aren’t broken in while we’re on vacation so we look cute.

This morning, our #roadtriptoleavenworth is ending. We’re driving back to real life where we make our own oatmeal for breakfast and only go shopping for deodorant, shampoo, and groceries. It’s back to making our own beds and going to work. I’ve enjoyed this trip to little Bavaria. It’s a quaint city with tons of charm. I’m sure I’ll be back and next time, I’ll make sure I have less ouchy boots with me.

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