Tuesday, January 22, 2013

My USA trip

My one and only trip to the US of A

As a kid I wanted to travel to the USA where the celebrities are. My desire grew less as I got older, but I have family over there on Mums side who I was desperate to meet and also a step sister and brother and other family members on my step fathers (Terry) side who live in the US who I wanted to see. Mum booked a holiday for me a year ago when I was pregnant but because I wasn't able to get travel insurance, it was cancelled. So, finally at the age of 38, with baby Oscar (10 months) in tow, I boarded the plane to America. My Step father had left a bit earlier than Mum and I, so when we arrived after a 17 hour flight, in LA, he picked us up in a hire car and drove us to the hotel in Sacramento where his kids live. It was the day after Christmas when we arrived.. funnily enough, we left Boxing day, so it was weird after such a long distance to arrive virtually the same day and time as we left.

 We didn't do much the first night. My step brother (Travis) came to the hotel to see us which was great. We got some take out Sushi and I went to sleep at around 9pm. The next day Terry stayed in bed. This was pretty much the theme for the entire 3 weeks. He in bed, Mum and I walking around shops with the baby until lunch time, go back to the hotel, get step father, put up with him stressing about the time and traffic until dinner time and then eat out, go back to hotel and go to bed exhausted from the emotional stress.

 Yes.. this is about to turn into a story about what could have been the most exciting 3 weeks of my life, turned into the most emotionally draining, uncomfortable, awkward 3 weeks I could have ever anticipated, courtesy of my asshat step father. If you don't like reading potentially self adsorbed negative seemingly ungrateful posts, then I suggest you close this page now.

 Before leaving for the USA people were asking what the plans were for New Years Eve and I was proud to say that I would be spending it in San Fransisco watching fireworks. Well, yes I was in San Fransisco, but I didn't see a single fire work. I spent it in the hotel room from 7pm. I knitted on the bed until around midnight and then turned off the light and went to sleep. Not my idea of a great night out. I would have preferred to be home in Melbourne with my children celebrating the way we do every other year, but I was stuck in a tiny hotel room with a view of nothing but walls of other buildings and the sound of excitement coming in the far distance where I could have been, had Terry not dragged us back to the hotel to avoid traffic.

Earlier that day we had gone to the wharf, eaten at Bubba Gump and wandered around the shops taking photos and having a wonderful time. Suddenly at around 6pm Terry starts getting antsy and rushing me out of the shops that I was trying to browse at my own leisure. I had no idea we were on a time limit. I asked him what he was in a rush for, what he had planned and he said he wanted to get back to the hotel to beat the traffic. I was taken back. I thought we were going to be there to watch the fireworks. I didn't realise we were about to leave. I told him I didn't want to leave and that traffic surely isn't such a big deal on NYE when we should be staying and enjoying ourselves. Well his reaction was typical of Terry. His arrogant response was just his personality. The way he speaks to my mother several times a day. Well you can stay here, but I am going to go back to the hotel. Ummm.. ok, I am in another country, I don't know how to get back let alone doing it on my own with a baby and stroller on the busiest night of the year. Obviously if he demanded we leave, that's what I have to do. So, that was that. YAY.

 So while we were in Sacramento I had a lovely time seeing Terry's family. After having dinner out to celebrate his daughter (Samantha's) 30th birthday, my Mum and Terry took Oscar back to the hotel to babysit while Sam, her husband Ryan and I went for a drink at the local pub. It was great. I was gone around 3 hours and when I got back to the hotel I was greeted with a distraught baby and an earful from my Mum who was obviously copping an earful from her tosser husband who was trying to sleep but couldn't because my Mum was unable to console Oscar.

Anyway, I settled him right away and when he fell asleep I started doing all of the washing and packing while Terry caught up on his beauty sleep. Of course even with his several hours of shut eye while Mum and I did all the work (me breastfeeding hourly too) he was still his usual arrogant ass the next day anyway. In the car when Oscar needed a nappy change Terry got shitty at having to pull over, telling us how we are on limited time. Like I am going to let my son sit in shit because Terry is inconvenienced *rolleyes* Whenever my Mum tried to speak to him he cut her off.. often just by putting his hand up.. she can only speak when spoken too.. his lordship is busy and can't be interrupted *pfff* what upsets me most about this situation is the fact that my Mum see's nothing wrong with it *vomit*

So then we go to San Diego. A beautiful hotel room. Such a lovely little city. We walked around for a little bit the first day there and then met up with his neice and went out for dinner at a Mexican restaurant. She was lovely, dinner was great, Oscar loved the music.. afterwards we went to the hotel and in the lobby I saw a ghost tour bus. I begged my Mum to babysit so I could go. It was only a 2 hour trip. She reluctantly agreed. Oscar was fine this time thank goodness.

On the way to San Diego we met up for lunch with an old friend of his he hadn't seen for 40 years. The plan was to see her, then go to the San Diego zoo with his sister the next day and meet up with some other family members for dinner at a place called DZ Aitkens (A famous Jewish restaurant which they love). The morning after we arrived however, his sister didn't feel like going to the zoo.. didn't want to get out of bed that early and had to run some errands. Personally I was looking forward to going to the zoo as many of the other plans made for the trip didn't come to fruition. So, he told his sister that Mum and I would prefer to go to the zoo than spend the day with her. Mum and I felt very awkward. He made it sound like we weren't keen on seeing her which was not true at all. So, he dropped us off at the zoo and ran errands with his sister instead of coming with us. He then picked us up at 2pm and we went back to the hotel so he could have a nap before going to dinner.

That night after dinner I was laying on the bed knitting and Terry asks me if I want to go to the cemetery with him the next day. I told him I don't mind going for an hour or two, but don't really feel like spending the day there. He said he didn't want a time limit and I said, then fine I won't go it's not like they will mind being dead and all..
To that he jumped up and stood over me when I was on the bed, with his fist up, yelling and spitting his froth from his mouth like a rabid dog. Saying how it's HIS holiday not mine and why should HE be on a time limit blah blah blah..

So it was decided that I wouldn't go, but as we would have to be checked out of the hotel room by 10am, it would mean that I would have to either wander around the streets with Oscar or sit in the lobby for some undisclosed amount of time because terry didn't want a time limit.
Turned out that he was back at the hotel room before check out anyway and he waltzed in all cheery like the night before never even happened.
Love being abused by an arrogant psycho and have my Mother side with him.. typical.

I wasn't going to speak to him for the rest of the trip.. which was another 10 days. But being one to rather avoid conflict and just build a bridge and enjoy myself as much as I can, I internally forgave him for his asshattery.. until the next day when he cut my Mum off from speaking because he was driving and she was interrupting his train of thought. I bit my tongue but my loathing was increasing by the minute.

So next stop was New Jersey to see my family. He was his usual arrogant arse at the airport but as soon as my second cousin was in sight, Terry had a Jekle and Hyde personality flip. Suddenly he was a happy go lucky guy. *puke*
He tried to keep this new persona up for the entire 3 days but he did let slip a few times.. usually when none of my family were in ear shot. One time was when my Mum went to ask him a question.. he put his hand up and shhh'd her. He was watching the football.. she was rudely interrupting again.
So, my beautiful cousins wanted to take us out for a day. They asked ME what I wanted to do. Finally someone bothered to ask ME. So I said I wanted to see the memorial.. obviously Terry didn't think that would be a good idea, but Gary seemed to not really be swayed by Terry's opinion.. bless him ♥
Terry wanted me to see the Empire state building.. which I was happy to see, but from the ground as I am afraid of heights. He told me I may as well google photos then. When I said I wanted to see the Statue of Liberty I was told I could see that on any post card. So, other than the 911 memorial and a pizza shop, that was all I would have seen in New York had I not been so selfish as to beg them to look after Oscar so I could take myself to see a show on Broadway. I was told that I was selfish and rude etc that I could see Wicked in Melbourne yada yada that I shouldn't have had 5 kids and it was my choice to so I shouldn't complain that I won't be able to come to the USA again and I don't get time for shows in Australia.
Anyway, it was my last night, I wasn't going to miss out because of him again. I had already missed out on Universal studios, Statue of Liberty, NYE celebrations etc etc
Of course, he didn't want to walk me there or back, so I went with a map on my own through the streets of New York in the middle of the night. He gave me a phone incase I got mugged.. of course if I was mugged they would have let me keep the cell phone.

So that was my trip away. I got back home and within 3 days terry and Mum are posting photos of their time at Disney World and Universal studios in Florida. Terry having a great time on rides etc seemingly pain free and full of energy. Fancy that.
I on the other hand have a fever, abscess in my mouth, cyst under my armpit, blocked sinuses, which the doctor thinks is possibly swine flu and I also have carpel tunnel just to add to my discomfort.

I would post photos, but they are all faux. Terry was sure to take a photo of me outside universal studios to make it look like we went in.. we didn't though. It looks like I went to Disney world.. they were just people dressed up at Sponge Bob and Chewbecca etc on the streets of New York. They charged $5 to take a photo of them. Terry was in bed.. he only got out of bed to eat, go to the bar or see family.

They are holidaying in the USA for another 6 weeks. They will visit 6 months out of the year every year from now on. I figured my holiday would be of some importance being that it was only for 3 weeks and once off. I felt like I was intruding on their holiday.. in fact I was TOLD that. Anyway.. home now. I am grateful to my Mum for trying to give me the holiday of my dreams. I will never forgive Terry for ruining it. As far as I am concerned, I will never speak to him again.

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