Saturday, 30 July 2011

I hate F#$!=ing Family Trips.

Hate 'em.
I think I had the "Family Group Fun" gene removed at birth because the whole let's-go-out-together-and-do-something-together-even-it-isn't-so-fun thing....bores me F######ing stupid!!!!

How do people do years and years of this?
Like those Hollywood movies about businesspeople who inherit a baby/toddler/teenager and don't know what to do - me and Family Trips. Oh God.
I'm an only child with older, working parents - I enjoy doing things on my own or with one other person. If there is a problem you can ammend the plans and there is a 100% or 50% chance you can do what you want.
In a family group you are stuck in not-fun have-to hell.

But it all started ok.
I got home mid-afternoon to water garden, pack supermarket food bits into the backpack, fold up the garden chair, prep Okaasan, play with cats etc etc.

Even managed to have a Moment in Memory of My Dad: a student had given me a can of a drink called Pim's, it's a popular summer party drink in the UK and as I drank it I remembered that my Dad loved the I had a little quiet Dad Memory Moment in the afternoon sunshine in the garden.

Anyway. Oyomesan On Duty.
5.30 pm got Okaasan ready to go - made sure she had the right things to take with her and left unnecessary stuff at home. Walked with her to the subway station. Crowds of people starting to gather, girls in yukata summer kimono - the clip on sash (obi) popped off one girl and Okaasan scurried to help her put it back on which was sweet.
Rode the subway into town - Okaasan got the old people's seat in the corner and I could stand nearby with the camping chairs and backpack of food. The pink flowery yukata-wearing girl next to me..was actually a boy with a blonde wig which kept slipping.

At the Susukino subway station Yujiro met us with his bike taxi and took us to the riverside park - fun actually to ride in the bike taxi and wave to people. Okaasan all giggly.

All good.
Saki, Yoko, Kevin and Ikuko...Okaasan and Yujiro behind.

Then....6.20 pm Yujiro dropped us in the park and went off to return his taxi to the garage. I set us up on a bench by the river, some friends found us and came to say hello, and we watched the crowds gather and the kids playing in the water.

And waited.
And waited.

Yujiro took for bloody ever to come back....30 minutes or more I sat there trying to chat Okaasan along about kids and water and fireworks and yukata...and yes...many, many, many  times the story of how she and a friend had stayed in the Tobu Hotel when they came to Sapporo.
Finally he came back. And then - he started talking about going to buy beer somewhere - NO!!!!!!!! DON'T leave me again!! I'll get the beer for you, YOU sit here with your mother....pleeeeeeese.
So he did.
I got beer and came back. We opened up the supermarket packs of food and ate.
And waited some more. 
I stayed in the Tobu Hotel when I came to Sapporo.

The Fireworks Display was due to start at 7.45 pm....we sat there for ages waiting...
At 7.30 pm Okaasan asked: "Are the fireworks finished then?"
To all the friends and students who have recently said to me: "Oh, but Okaasan looks so normal!"...this is the reality - Okaasan had NO idea sitting there in the dusk with us in a crowded park by the river...have I watched fireworks yet or not??? She had no memory of what had happened there.

Finally they started. 
And we couldn't see the F#)&$"!?*`##ing things.
Hidden behind buildings.
Don't know why. Many more high buildings in Sapporo now? Less money spent on big fireworks that can be seen from downtown? The Lord Almighty determined to F#$( with me?
Our friends disappeared in the crowds to get a better view, everyone got up and crossed the big road to get a better view...we kept moving the camping chairs and Okaasan .....moving...moving..
Finally watched the display through the streetsigns and electricity cables near a road packed with crawling cars....a complete failure as a firework watching experience.

And Okaasan shat her pants.
I could smell it and there was a stain on the camping chair.
Even though we kept pointing out the toilets - because this was afterall why we had chosen this place for the evening - she still shat her pants.

F!$&()?*`=)'(%"!"ing Family Trips.

I hate 'em.

Happy Family Trip to the Fireworks...or Don't Believe the Happy Smiley Faces in Photographs Because It Ain't True.


  1. Oh dear........... Boo for you.

  2. I guess enjoying family trips largely depends on who is in your family. And whether they have something interesting to say/ toilet using abilities.

  3. I really feel your pain.
    This is so similar to how it is when it's all of us together---I always get stuck with having to talk to MIL while husband goes off to do something else.

  4. Thanks mid-Japan-crises....I feel guilty ( a little) for blathering on here with frustration...specially when I saw a thing on TV about a man in Fukushima who lost his father/wife/child to the tsunami etc....but...really I feel these Let's Family Trips are more trouble than they are worth...Okaasan would be happy with something simple and WE go to so much planning's exhausting.

  5. Maybe it is time to scale back your outing ides. When raising kids, there's a period when outings are really simple, like a walk down the road to 7-11 for an icecream eaten in the park and everyone thinks it was a grand day out. Then gradually the horizons expand till the kids are cutting back their ideas because their parents can't keep up! Then the kids start the planning, and then they begin to have to scale them down. Maybe you are approaching the walk to 7-11 end of the scale once more? Everything in life is circular......

  6. I think you are right Vicky - Okaasan is happy with a lunch/dinner out in a local place. She still enjoys the festivals though because they are a real replay for her of her childhood - these seasonal events - but a hassle for us to make it happen for her...takes away what should be a simple pleasure.
    Fireworks in the garden next year methinks...