The Gray Line Tour

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 30, 1998

By LEONARD GRAY / L’Observateur / November 30, 1998

The day was spent with my wife’s family, not all of them, mind you, or it would have been utter chaos. This included my wife’s parents, her sister,our brother-in-law and their three teen-agers.

With nine people in our modest house, and with all the other stresses and strains of the last few months, it was decided to buy Thanksgiving dinner from a restaurant which caters to such events. As a result, my wifepicked up the turkey, mushroom gravy, cornbread dressing, green beans, cranberry relish, potatoes au gratin, bread, pies and spumoni on Thursday morning, sparing her the baking, boiling and re-heating in the microwave and allowing her to actually visit. Afterward, we had the serving dishesand the place-settings to wash and everyone was stuffed and happy.

We turned the two boys and girl loose on the computer, and between Tomb Raider II and the internet, they were content. We’d pop in from time totime to check on them and everything went fine.

The youngsters were, of course, regulated to a card table alongside the “grownup table” and we indulged ourselves in good food and family talk. Itwas the first time my wife’s sister family had been down in about five years and there was a lot of catching up to do. They were thankful theywere out of the snowstorms sweeping into Washington state. We werethankful we didn’t have to worry about them.

Colette, it turned out, was slightly allergic to cats, so I pointed out the tissue and she was content. Our cat, Macavity, was a gentleman, visitingeveryone, permitting them to pet him, and adjourned to a nearby room from where he could enjoy a staring contest with David. David and Cliftondownloaded a “cheatcode” website for Tomb Raider II. Colette discoveredour coffee-table books on plantations and on Manchac Swamp.

Then someone spotted the lizard. You know, the kind that can onlyterrorize a fly or mosquito.

We were all at the table and Barbara happened to spot the lizard on the patio door immediately behind her. She thought at first it was on the glassoutside but quickly discovered it was inside the glass and on the curtain.

Chaos ruled for about three minutes, while her mother, my wife and Barbara’s husband, Dick, chased the lizard back and forth in the room, under the dining room table. Finally, my wife captured it and set it free inthe front yard. I was no help at all, deciding instead to chalk it down as acolumn idea for today.

And, for that, I was thankful.

Copyright © 1998, Wick Communications, Inc.

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