Thursday, August 24, 2006

Canceled Trip to Pluto

Everyone needs a hobby. Some people play music or grow flowers or buy clothes...I travel.

There was a time, when I was much younger and had not learned how to tap into my brain and make wise decisions, that I traveled constantly, which sometimes interfered with that other hobby, eating. It was nothing to book four round-trip tickets to Los Angeles a year, a couple to Phoenix to visit my cousin, a couple to Texas to visit the same cousin, another one to Phoenix to visit the SAME cousin (she finally decided on Phoenix and has stayed there, thank God, well, so far, but the year is young - I hated Texas with a passion), one to Rhode Island to visit with my friend, one to New Mexico to visit with the SAME friend (see a pattern?) and one to Boston to visit the stable friend in my life, who has stayed put...so far, but then something happened. One day I woke up and the passion for cramming everything I own into a suitcase and heaving it in and out of the trunk of my car, off the baggage carousel and past fifty whining kids, five barking dogs and three hundred rude adults at an airport, not to mention the four huge, camouflage-clad men carrying assault weapons, the whole time sweating and pushing my glasses back up on my nose and my hair out of my eyes and dragging my ass out of bed at two o'clock AM to drive 90 miles into the later time zone to make a seven AM flight, was undeniably gone. The very things I embraced about traveling became more my idea of visiting Hell, so I stayed put for several months, content to make a trip to Wal-Mart the most harrowing, crowded and longest trip into the bowels of rudeness I was willing to make. Everyone knows there are two places in the United States that rival one another for jerks of any kind: Wal-Mart and any major airport.

Then, I began to miss the whole idea of packing and that feeling of excitement the day of a long-awaited vacation, and dipped my big toe in to test the water by flying off on a vacation to the mountains with my boyfriend. Prior to the mountains, though, we visited Roswell, New Mexico, and learned all there was to know about alien abductions, alien visitations and UFOs. The study of space escalated for Don and me and probably the one statement I will forever be known for among my circle was, "I can't wait to book a trip to Pluto someday!"

Well, guess what happened next. They took Pluto away. That's correct. Scientists have now decided that Pluto is not part of our Solar System. There are a lot of ramifications to that declaration: First, they will be able to charge more for the flight since it is to a foreign solar system, and the little phrase that has been drilled endlessly into Baby Boomer's heads: My very educated mother just served me nine pickles, is totally obsolete. What now? My very educated mother just served me nine, just does not make any sense.

So I am putting away my solar suitcase and rethinking my Star Gazer's Weekend to Pluto. I am pretty sure I will not be able to afford it now, and I'm sure the language will change and they will no longer speak English there, adopting their own Plutonian gibberish, Plenglish, that only Generation ZZZ will be able to understand.

Goodbye, Pluto, it sure has been nice having you as the pickle! I wonder what I could wear to Neptune.

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