It only took my announcement that I’m moving back to the east coast for my parents to say, “OK! We’re coming to visit you!” So on March 26, Chuckles and JoJo will land at LAX. It will be Mom’s first time in California, and Dad hasn’t been here since before I was born, so you know they want to do allllll the touristy things.
I kid you not, I am going to be on that bus. Yes, that bus. The Hollywood Tour Bus. Mom already bought tickets. This is really happening. It’s actually kind of phenomenal that during my last week in LA, I’m going on the Hollywood Bus Tour with my parents. For sure I will be observing the people on the tour more than the celebrity houses we pass by. I kind of can’t wait. (And now after listening to the Missing Richard Simmons podcast, I’ll secretly be hoping to see him/so excited if I do see him).
Here’s the sort-of itinerary:
My parents arrive late Sunday afternoon. Since we’ll be on the westside, I’ll show them around Venice/Marina Del Rey/Santa Monica. Maybe I’ll take them on a Previous Home Tour of all the places I’ve lived. Maybe we’ll take a walk in the Venice Canals, although Mom says we might have to “leave your father behind.”
Dad had hip replacement surgery over a year ago and was doing great, but now he’s having issues with his feet. Either way, the end result is my Dad doesn’t get around like he used to. Or like my Mom says, “He’s an old man. I’m divorcing your father. He’s really not bringing anything to the table these days. He has arthritis, dementia,… .” Yea but he does make us laugh. “Yea….that’s it.”
Dad does have arthritis. He does not have dementia. Mom just says this because he forgets EVERYTHING. All the time. I can relate, and I’m only 32.
Eventually, we’ll drive down to Long Beach. My parents will not only get to see my apartment, they’re staying there with me. Yup. Mom and Dad are sleeping in my airbed – because that’s what I have – and I’ll be sleeping on the floor. It’s going to be sooooo cozy.
Monday we’ll head back in to LA for the whole Hollywood madness. Bus tour, walking tour, see the Hollywood sign, Walk of Fame. Standard touristy stuff.
Tuesday – back into LA… again. This time for Universal Studios. I’m hoping to get there early – so we can get everything in and not be there all day – because after that, we’re driving up to Topanga so Mom and Dad can meet Tara and the boys! Finally! Not sure if Rich will be home from work, but hopefully they’ll get to meet him, too. It’s crazy to think that Mom and Dad have not met Rich and Tara yet. I’m so excited.
Wednesday – Steve and Kelly arrive in Long Beach! Yay! Coincidentally, they will be on the same connecting flight from Phoenix. Once she realized this, Kelly switched her seat to be next to him. (So adorable.) I don’t know what I’m going to do with myself when Kelly, Steve, and my parents are all together in Long Beach. I won’t be able to stop smiling.
It will be Kelly’s first time visiting. She was thinking of coming earlier this year, but after my parents booked their trip, I thought it might be fun if they all came together/overlap. Plus, I wouldn’t have to worry about trying to get off work. When I asked Mom if she minded, she repeated the question back to me. “Do I mind if Kelly comes while we’re there?”
“No-of-course-I-don’t-mind-if-Kelly-comes.” She breathed it all out in a huff like it was one word.
Kelly went on my family vacation to OBX last year, without me, so they’re used to fun get-aways with her. It’s not a family vacation without Kelly! They absolutely love her, so it’s a win-win all around.
Steve and Kelly arrive early afternoon. We’ll take a Gondola Ride in the Naples Canals, right by my apartment. (Steve and I did it with Courtney on her visit right after Christmas and had so much fun.)
Later that night, I’ll bring them to The Federal Bar for drinks and to meet everyone I work(ed) with. I’ve only been at The Federal since August but I’ve made such great friends. When I moved to Long Beach, I said I didn’t want to make any friends. I wanted to put my head down and work and get shit done. But everyone that works there is so freaking nice, I couldn’t avoid it.
Thursday is my going-away shindig at Brick+Mortar. Or rather, “our” shindig – Jackie and I are having it together. We realized recently that we’re both moving on the same exact day – me to North Carolina and her to Italy. We have a lot of the same friends, so it made sense.
I am so excited for Kelly and my parents to meet all my friends from Brick, and all my other friends who can make it to the party. Kelly wants to set up a booth and have everyone come up to her one-by-one so she can meet everyone individually and ask questions. My worlds are colliding and it’s the best.
Friday morning, my parents leave. Kelly leaves Sunday afternoon, so I’ve left it kind of open to see what she wants to do on her last two days in California.
Then Steve and I have three days to pack everything, tie up loose ends, and squeeze in some last-minute time with friends before we leave Long Beach together, for good. No more goodbyes. (Finally!)
It’s going to be an amazing week. I have one more week to work and clean and pack and prepare. It’s happening so fast. I feel like I have no time to get everything finished. I better get going!!