My mother's hill came many years ago....see, Dad had this very annoying habit of deciding we'd drive from our home in Smalltown A to visit his friend in BigCity B (there was a standing invite there) on say...the day before Thanksgiving, or Christmas Day. This was at least an 8-9 hour drive. Each way. Minimum. It happened at least once per year, beginning when I was 7 (try explaining to your excited 7 year old that she must put away her new gifts from Santa/family, pack her things, and sit quietly for hours in the car, before sitting quietly at Dad's friend's place for about 5 days before driving back. I resented every minute of it, but as a well behaved and disciplined child, I kept my mouth shut). My mother would not say a word, but would quietly fume at the waste of food at our house.
It finally stopped when I was 16. That year, we'd been to BigCity B for turkey day. Dad's friend had a GF hosting dinner. Her two boys were with their father, so Friend invited another acquaintance, his girlfriend, and his parents to Thanksgiving. It's me with 8 adults all over the age of 35. But it gets better. See, acquaintance was born in Spain, and grew up in Argentina. His parents keep to their cultural tradition of not eating dinner until very, very late in the evening. Dinner was supposed to be served at 6. Because of the parents (and acquaintance, the GF, Dad's friend, Friend's GF's lack of spines), we did not sit down to eat until 10:30- they did not arrive until 10:15. The bird was bone dry. I was practically falling asleep in my mashed potatoes. Dad was annoyed, but would not say a word. Mom was pissed.
It gets better.
The Parents spend most of the meal sniping at each other. In Spanish. Very, very nasty comments. They thought their son would be the only one to understand them. I however had been taking Spanish classes for 5 years at that point, and understood them perfectly.
So please, enjoy, if you will, the image of 16 yr old Chipmunky trying to keep it together, half asleep, half faint from hunger, as she realizes she's able to understand the nasty stuff going on across the table from her, and she must wrestle with saying something and risking parental wrath for being rude and interrupting conversations, or suffer in silence and try not to choke.
Well, I managed not to choke, but it was a close thing. I later told my folks what was really going on (the parents were sniping in polite tones so no one would guess they were arguing). Mom used that, combined with the ridiculously late dinner, to lay down the law re: going to BigCity B for holidays, on said holidays, after she's got things planned, for evermore. We've not been back since.