Kitty is done with us

Olive the cat in the suitcase.
Every time I pack, this happens. Olive is done with our vacations.

We had a tiring but fun weekend. I’ve decided that a six-hour drive on Friday, followed by six-hours on Sunday to get home, is too much for me.

I don’t mind the long drives like we took to Santa Barbara in August. That’s because we stayed for awhile. My body had time to relax and recover.

We arrived in San Diego Friday with one hour to rest and get read for a 30-minute drive to the wedding venue. What saved us on the drive was listening to “The Rooster Bar” by John Grisham. It’s amazing how books on tape — or Audible — make the drives fly by.

I made the mistake of booking our hotel room in Santee, SC — instead of Santee, CA. Oops.

Who knew there was more than one Santee and they’d have hotels with the exact same name?

The highlight of our trip happened Saturday. We visited my husband’s aunt and uncle who live in Santee (hence the reason I booked a hotel there — or thought I did. Right town, wrong state.) His cousin surprised us and came too with her son from an hour away.

My husband’s uncle is 93 years old. The last time we saw him was August three years ago to celebrate his 90th birthday. Because of COVID and then moving we haven’t visited. I have to say he looks amazing. He’s full of energy. He drives, he shops, he cooks, he waits on his wife — my husband’s aunt. He makes the best Italian food I’ve ever eaten. Luciano (the uncle) came to the US from Italy when he was 30 years old after marrying my husband’s aunt. She met Luciano while she was the city planner of Rome.

After she graduated with a degree from Berkeley in the 1960s, she couldn’t get hired in the U.S. in her field because she was a woman. However, she did get hired in Italy, so she learned Italian and moved.

She’s a dynamo that I’ve always looked up to. Not only has she had an amazing career, she’s written and published at least 15 books. She’s a world traveler and had a series based on a travel agent/murder solver. If you’re interested, here’s a link to R. Ann Siracusa on Goodreads. My favorite book of hers is “Family Secrets: A Vengeance of Tears.”

If that’s not enough, she’s a grandmother who actively takes care of her grandchildren. And she quilts. She taught my daughter and I how to quilt.

Whew, I’m exhausted thinking about these inspiring relatives.

What relatives have motivated and inspired you? What’s your limit for drives on trips?

20 thoughts on “Kitty is done with us

  1. I was wondering if we had some distant relatives for a moment EA. My son in law grew up in Santee and his family is very much of Italian descent, plus his mom was a big time quilter! The names you mentioned aren’t familiar though 🙂
    I have to move at least every few hours. My hips and knees can’t sit still too long so driving is determined in small chunks for me. Six hours straight would be a nightmare and I’d likely have to crawl out of the vehicle!

    • The San Diego area has a lot of Italians or those of Italian descent. Our relatives are fairly new to the Santee area. I wonder if my husband’s aunt knows the other quilter? I have pain in my hips and knees, so long drives kill me.

  2. That is a long distance to travel for only two nights but I’m glad you had a great time! You have some very productive relatives! How wonderful! We have a family wedding this weekend a day before we leave for the Camino! 💕C

  3. Fabulous story! I’m Italian, have my dual citizenship. Her book writing sounds like Donna Leon. Great mysteries turned into TV shows by the Germans. Her stories take place in Venice. Maybe you’ve heard of her. I will look for the book you recommended. GLAD to hear of people doing well in older age. Hope for us, right!

    • Kitty whacked my finger while I made the bed and took a chunk of it. She really is happy we’re home, but has a weird way of showing it. Yes, those relatives are so inspiring.

  4. My grandmother was pretty cool. I hate driving long distances. We did a college road trip in 2018…two to Georgia up to Chicago, back to NY….ugh…

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