Author Topic: Vacation Dictators.  (Read 30124 times)

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artk2002

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #180 on: March 07, 2013, 02:59:21 PM »
If I'm excited about doing something on vacation, and I don't catch myself, I will start to turn into a dictator myself.  My DH and I are going to Gettsyburg this year for the 150th anniversary.  Reading up on it, I discovered they have horseback tours of the battlefield.  I love this idea - I want to see as much as I can, but walking isn't always a good method for me, since I get blisters very easily.  I think I mentioned it to my DH about six or seven times with the wording "I think we're going to do this horseback tour" before he finally had to bluntly say, "I don't want to do that, and repeating yourself won't make it happen".  :-[  I'm fine with him not coming on the tour, just got carried away and assumed that whatever I wanted to do, he would also want to do!

Sorry your DH didn't come right out and say that he didn't want to do it. You weren't the dictator in this case, he was being passive.

Mildly O/T: The boys have been invited to go to Gettysburg with the family of a school friend (not the total flake family from my previous post.) The friends aren't coming back directly, so we're going to have them put the boys on the train to Chicago. Mrs.k2002 and I will meet them there, after visiting her son and his wife in Peoria. We'll all take the train back to Los Angeles.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bow lines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. -Mark Twain

cheyne

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #181 on: March 07, 2013, 03:05:12 PM »
Going "Up Nort" to the lake.  We took a family vacation for 8 years by renting a cabin on a beautiful lake in northern Minnesota.  We'd be there for a week fishing, swimming, horseback riding, cooking out and just enjoying life.  At least DH, DS, and DD were enjoying life.  I still had to cook, wash dishes, clean up wet swimsuits and towels, pack the cooler & changes of clothes for a day on the water, bathe kids (or at least make sure they bathed), make beds, supervise kid activities, haul bait to the boat, help clean fish, build fires, pull splinters...you get the drift.    :P

My vacation dictators were my DH and kids!*

After 6 years of this, as we were driving 5 hours home after a week of "vacation" my DH says to me, "I love going to the lake, it's so relaxing."  I will admit I had a bit of a meltdown.  I told him that from now on, we could do the lake in the summer, but I was going somewhere that I could eat out and have maid service in the winter.  If he wanted to come he was welcome, but no kids were invited and I wasn't even going to carry my own bags! 

We started going on a golf vacation in February that was for me.  DH comes along, but I don't carry my own bags, cook or lift a finger doing any kind of "housework". 

*I don't mean to sound resentful, but it was just another week of work for me in a different setting.  I am very happy that we took the lake vacations with the kids.  Those vacations are some of their fondest memories. 

RebeccainGA

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #182 on: March 07, 2013, 03:31:43 PM »
*I don't mean to sound resentful, but it was just another week of work for me in a different setting.  I am very happy that we took the lake vacations with the kids.  Those vacations are some of their fondest memories. 

Oh, that always has really annoyed me, too. We go on a trip, I have to get the house all ready to shut down, pack for every contingency, load DP, the luggage, and the dog into the van, drive, plan the route, do food (shopping, cooking or takeout) the whole time we're gone, get home with a week's worth of laundry, etc. - and while we're where we are going, which lately is visiting family, make things as much like they are at home as possible for DP and the dog, AND visit with family/help out while I'm there. I'm exhausted by the time we get there. I'm about to fall over when we get home. But it was 'such a nice vacation!'.

SPuck

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #183 on: March 07, 2013, 03:37:31 PM »
I really don't have any vacation dictators in my family but have a problem with planning for vacation dictators. My parents like to have vacation homes in areas they like to go (Cape Cod and Florida), and when they go to Florida they either take the plane or drive. When my dad drives he doesn't like to take breaks (it is a challenge for him to get down there in 24 hours, so far it keeps taking 28), and he likes to see how far he can go on a single tank of gas. I think he gets some kind of thrill on seeing how far he can go with the tank light on.

My mom generally flies down, and always buys tickets at the last moment. She is so afraid that she will miss out on some deal. She has to go down during school vacation week because she will get in trouble if she takes time not. (Not actually but she is afraid to break the rules like everyone else at her school does *cough*.) My brother and his wife did the same buy the ticket later thing, and they missed out on a 200 dollar round trip ticket deal in March. ><

weeblewobble

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #184 on: March 07, 2013, 03:45:57 PM »


*I don't mean to sound resentful, but it was just another week of work for me in a different setting.  I am very happy that we took the lake vacations with the kids.  Those vacations are some of their fondest memories.

Oh, no, I totally get this.  One of the worst vacation meltdowns I ever had was on a family reunion trip with DH's family.  (WHY do my meltdowns always seem to happen around DH's family?  WHY?)  DH and his out of town cousins went on a pre-arranged fishing trip and were to meet us at the cabins.  I had spent all day with the relatives, packing up, organizing, driving the kids to the destination, wrangling them while we waited for our cabin to be ready (Patriarch Uncle insisted we all leave for the destination by X time, knowing that the brochure stated the cabins wouldn't be ready for check in before much later.  But Patriarch Uncle was sure they'd make an exception for us.  ::))  My son was tired, cranky, hot and whining/crying for most of the afternoon.  My daughter was running wild with the cousins outside, but for some reason, Patriarch Uncle kept labeling her the "ring-leader" and said I needed to get a handle on her.  (The "ring-leader" of kids five years older than her? Uh, no.) 

DH finally gets back.  We sit down for a big family dinner, most of which I spend wrangling the kids while DH talks to his relatives.  I finally sit down to eat after fetching plates for the kids, drinks, replacing a dropped fork, another helping of salad for DD, etc.  And before my fork can reach my lips, DH says, "Hey, honey, can you grab me another soda?"

My, "ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?" was heard all across the lake, I believe.  I went back to our cabin alone without eating because I was afraid of having a public hissy fit. The ensuing argument that night was AWFUL.  DH and I usually get along beautifully together.  His way-above-his-usual-behavior obliviousness just caught me on the wrong dang day.  To this day, three years later, DH's relatives still believe we're teetering on the edge of divorce.

mmswm

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #185 on: March 07, 2013, 04:00:22 PM »
I can easily turn into a vacation dictator, but in my defense, I'm a single parent with two mobility impaired kids and a third kid who's a type I diabetic.  Any time we go someplace, I have to be super organized in order to manage all of their needs without a second adult around.  I also have to research destinations and activities and make sure they're wheelchair friendly. Youngest DS doesn't always use a wheelchair, but he does need one if we go anywhere there's going to be lots of walking. Oldest DS doesn't need a chair, but he can't handle a ton of stairs and needs constant breaks.  Middle DS must stop regularly for meals and insulin injections.  Trying to organize that takes the planning of a precision military maneuver. I can imagine that if any other adult ever wanted to spend an entire vacation with my family, they'd label me a dictator.
Some people lift weights.  I lift measures.  It's a far more esoteric workout. - (Quoted from a personal friend)

Coralreef

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #186 on: March 07, 2013, 04:31:37 PM »
I can easily turn into a vacation dictator, but in my defense, I'm a single parent with two mobility impaired kids and a third kid who's a type I diabetic.  Any time we go someplace, I have to be super organized in order to manage all of their needs without a second adult around.  I also have to research destinations and activities and make sure they're wheelchair friendly. Youngest DS doesn't always use a wheelchair, but he does need one if we go anywhere there's going to be lots of walking. Oldest DS doesn't need a chair, but he can't handle a ton of stairs and needs constant breaks.  Middle DS must stop regularly for meals and insulin injections.  Trying to organize that takes the planning of a precision military maneuver. I can imagine that if any other adult ever wanted to spend an entire vacation with my family, they'd label me a dictator.
Dealing with special needs, such as you are doing, is not being a dictator.  You make sure your children are comfortable and in good spirits so they actually enjoy their vacation time, and by extension, I'm pretty sure you enjoy the time with them too, since you navigate away from emergency situations. 

Good planning does not a dictator make.  A dictator is someone whose wants override everyone else's wants or needs. 


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Firecat

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #187 on: March 07, 2013, 06:01:38 PM »


*I don't mean to sound resentful, but it was just another week of work for me in a different setting.  I am very happy that we took the lake vacations with the kids.  Those vacations are some of their fondest memories.

Oh, no, I totally get this.  One of the worst vacation meltdowns I ever had was on a family reunion trip with DH's family.  (WHY do my meltdowns always seem to happen around DH's family?  WHY?)  DH and his out of town cousins went on a pre-arranged fishing trip and were to meet us at the cabins.  I had spent all day with the relatives, packing up, organizing, driving the kids to the destination, wrangling them while we waited for our cabin to be ready (Patriarch Uncle insisted we all leave for the destination by X time, knowing that the brochure stated the cabins wouldn't be ready for check in before much later.  But Patriarch Uncle was sure they'd make an exception for us.  ::))  My son was tired, cranky, hot and whining/crying for most of the afternoon.  My daughter was running wild with the cousins outside, but for some reason, Patriarch Uncle kept labeling her the "ring-leader" and said I needed to get a handle on her.  (The "ring-leader" of kids five years older than her? Uh, no.) 

DH finally gets back.  We sit down for a big family dinner, most of which I spend wrangling the kids while DH talks to his relatives.  I finally sit down to eat after fetching plates for the kids, drinks, replacing a dropped fork, another helping of salad for DD, etc.  And before my fork can reach my lips, DH says, "Hey, honey, can you grab me another soda?"

My, "ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?" was heard all across the lake, I believe.  I went back to our cabin alone without eating because I was afraid of having a public hissy fit. The ensuing argument that night was AWFUL.  DH and I usually get along beautifully together.  His way-above-his-usual-behavior obliviousness just caught me on the wrong dang day.  To this day, three years later, DH's relatives still believe we're teetering on the edge of divorce.

If it's any comfort, you were WAY nicer than I would have been in those circumstances. Because I not only would have told my DH to get his own [REDACTED] soda, I'd have told him precisely what to do with it...which probably would have involved shaking the can, shoving it where they have to pump in daylight, and then opening it, with the added hope that the result would be sufficient propellent for him to arrive on the moon. Or possibly Mars.

weeblewobble

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #188 on: March 07, 2013, 07:12:49 PM »


*I don't mean to sound resentful, but it was just another week of work for me in a different setting.  I am very happy that we took the lake vacations with the kids.  Those vacations are some of their fondest memories.

Oh, no, I totally get this.  One of the worst vacation meltdowns I ever had was on a family reunion trip with DH's family.  (WHY do my meltdowns always seem to happen around DH's family?  WHY?)  DH and his out of town cousins went on a pre-arranged fishing trip and were to meet us at the cabins.  I had spent all day with the relatives, packing up, organizing, driving the kids to the destination, wrangling them while we waited for our cabin to be ready (Patriarch Uncle insisted we all leave for the destination by X time, knowing that the brochure stated the cabins wouldn't be ready for check in before much later.  But Patriarch Uncle was sure they'd make an exception for us.  ::))  My son was tired, cranky, hot and whining/crying for most of the afternoon.  My daughter was running wild with the cousins outside, but for some reason, Patriarch Uncle kept labeling her the "ring-leader" and said I needed to get a handle on her.  (The "ring-leader" of kids five years older than her? Uh, no.) 

DH finally gets back.  We sit down for a big family dinner, most of which I spend wrangling the kids while DH talks to his relatives.  I finally sit down to eat after fetching plates for the kids, drinks, replacing a dropped fork, another helping of salad for DD, etc.  And before my fork can reach my lips, DH says, "Hey, honey, can you grab me another soda?"

My, "ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?" was heard all across the lake, I believe.  I went back to our cabin alone without eating because I was afraid of having a public hissy fit. The ensuing argument that night was AWFUL.  DH and I usually get along beautifully together.  His way-above-his-usual-behavior obliviousness just caught me on the wrong dang day.  To this day, three years later, DH's relatives still believe we're teetering on the edge of divorce.

If it's any comfort, you were WAY nicer than I would have been in those circumstances. Because I not only would have told my DH to get his own [REDACTED] soda, I'd have told him precisely what to do with it...which probably would have involved shaking the can, shoving it where they have to pump in daylight, and then opening it, with the added hope that the result would be sufficient propellent for him to arrive on the moon. Or possibly Mars.

Under normal circumstances, it's not a request that would have gotten him such a vitriolic response.  On most days I would oblige or he would do the same for me.  But after a hot miserable day of watching unhappy kids +  the sensation that every.single.time I tried to sit long enough to take a bite one of the kids needed something X the feeling that not only was DH totally oblivious to what I was going through X the square root of seeing him relaxed and happy, having lovely adult conversations with his relatives = Spousal Krakatoa
« Last Edit: March 07, 2013, 07:17:02 PM by weeblewobble »

Firecat

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #189 on: March 07, 2013, 07:16:22 PM »


*I don't mean to sound resentful, but it was just another week of work for me in a different setting.  I am very happy that we took the lake vacations with the kids.  Those vacations are some of their fondest memories.

Oh, no, I totally get this.  One of the worst vacation meltdowns I ever had was on a family reunion trip with DH's family.  (WHY do my meltdowns always seem to happen around DH's family?  WHY?)  DH and his out of town cousins went on a pre-arranged fishing trip and were to meet us at the cabins.  I had spent all day with the relatives, packing up, organizing, driving the kids to the destination, wrangling them while we waited for our cabin to be ready (Patriarch Uncle insisted we all leave for the destination by X time, knowing that the brochure stated the cabins wouldn't be ready for check in before much later.  But Patriarch Uncle was sure they'd make an exception for us.  ::))  My son was tired, cranky, hot and whining/crying for most of the afternoon.  My daughter was running wild with the cousins outside, but for some reason, Patriarch Uncle kept labeling her the "ring-leader" and said I needed to get a handle on her.  (The "ring-leader" of kids five years older than her? Uh, no.) 

DH finally gets back.  We sit down for a big family dinner, most of which I spend wrangling the kids while DH talks to his relatives.  I finally sit down to eat after fetching plates for the kids, drinks, replacing a dropped fork, another helping of salad for DD, etc.  And before my fork can reach my lips, DH says, "Hey, honey, can you grab me another soda?"

My, "ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?" was heard all across the lake, I believe.  I went back to our cabin alone without eating because I was afraid of having a public hissy fit. The ensuing argument that night was AWFUL.  DH and I usually get along beautifully together.  His way-above-his-usual-behavior obliviousness just caught me on the wrong dang day.  To this day, three years later, DH's relatives still believe we're teetering on the edge of divorce.

If it's any comfort, you were WAY nicer than I would have been in those circumstances. Because I not only would have told my DH to get his own [REDACTED] soda, I'd have told him precisely what to do with it...which probably would have involved shaking the can, shoving it where they have to pump in daylight, and then opening it, with the added hope that the result would be sufficient propellent for him to arrive on the moon. Or possibly Mars.

Under normal circumstances, it's not a request that would have gotten him such a vitriolic response.  On most days I would oblige or he would do the same for me.  But after a hot miserable day of watching unhappy kids +  the sensation that every.single.time I tried to sit long enough to take a bit one of the kids needed something X the feeling that not only was DH totally oblivious to what I was going through X the square root of seeing him relaxed and happy, having lovely adult conversations with his relatives = Spousal Krakatoa

Oh, I completely get it. If I weren't already sitting or were getting myself one, I'd cheerfully get my DH a soda. But under the circumstances you were in at that point...yeah, Krakatoa is about right.

kherbert05

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #190 on: March 07, 2013, 10:19:16 PM »
I've always wondered about the "keep me awake while I'm driving" thing that bloo mentions--I've heard other people IRL mention it, too. I always think, if at any point, after any length of driving, you're so tired that a second human being has to make sure you stay awake enough to operate the car... wouldn't that mean you should pull over and stop driving? And if that length of time is only like an hour or something, maybe you were just not built for road trips. Honestly I think it would really scare me if my driver said I was responsible for making sure s/he didn't nod off at the wheel--hey, let's take a cab to the airport and fly instead!

Reminds me of my boss when a bunch of us went on an "office road trip" to a conference a few years ago. The boss and two co-workers took one car, boss driving, and the rest of us got to go in "the fun van" driven by someone else. My friend/co-worker who was trapped in the backseat of the "paranoia car" reported that the boss was so afraid of falling asleep while driving--even starting from the moment she turned on the engine--that the other employee was instructed to constantly talk to her, read things from the paper, etc. until my friend was almost going insane from listening to the inane chatter. But of course, boss wouldn't let either of the others drive, because she didn't trust them.  ::) The boss ordered us in the van to remain in sight of her at all times on the highway, and she wasn't going to let us stop for lunch. Our driver skillfully let a few cars get in between us, then pulled off the highway to a fast food restaurant so we could eat. The boss called and was like, "Where are you?!" and we were all like, "Oh yeah, we're just a few cars behind you, we can see you." That was definitely NOT a vacation, but it DID involve a dictator...
Sometimes when people say - you have to keep me awake, they really mean help me avoid road hypnotism. I drove people back and forth from Georgetown, Texas and Houston for 3.5 years. One of the the "rules" was either you talk to me - or you are going to listen to a monologue for about 3 hours. If I sit there and stare at the road going by things start to blur, and I'm not as alert.

Also part of being a good passenger in parts of Texas - is helping to watch out for wildlife crossing the road they put those deer crossings in the worst places. Sis and BIL will drive 18 hours tomorrow. They don't mind the other sleeping during daylight - but both of them will be awake starting at dusk to look for deer.
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Yvaine

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #191 on: March 07, 2013, 10:44:33 PM »
For me when I'm a passenger, the trouble comes when I'm as tired as the driver, and the driver ends up getting mad at me for not being entertaining enough while I'm keeping up a steady stream of inane chatter. This has actually happened! Well, excuuuse me, I'm tired too and I used up all my funny stories already and really we should both pull over and catch a few winks.

ETA: The trip I really wish I could win an award for was when the driver complained that my chatter was boring and so I maneuvered him into lecturing about one of his own pet topics for the remaining hour and a half of the trip. I didn't even have to say a word once he got rolling--the glee he got out of going into "lecturer mode" kept him bright-eyed and bushy-tailed the whole time.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2013, 10:48:47 PM by Yvaine »

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #192 on: March 07, 2013, 10:55:36 PM »


*I don't mean to sound resentful, but it was just another week of work for me in a different setting.  I am very happy that we took the lake vacations with the kids.  Those vacations are some of their fondest memories.

Oh, no, I totally get this.  One of the worst vacation meltdowns I ever had was on a family reunion trip with DH's family.  (WHY do my meltdowns always seem to happen around DH's family?  WHY?)  DH and his out of town cousins went on a pre-arranged fishing trip and were to meet us at the cabins.  I had spent all day with the relatives, packing up, organizing, driving the kids to the destination, wrangling them while we waited for our cabin to be ready (Patriarch Uncle insisted we all leave for the destination by X time, knowing that the brochure stated the cabins wouldn't be ready for check in before much later.  But Patriarch Uncle was sure they'd make an exception for us.  ::))  My son was tired, cranky, hot and whining/crying for most of the afternoon.  My daughter was running wild with the cousins outside, but for some reason, Patriarch Uncle kept labeling her the "ring-leader" and said I needed to get a handle on her.  (The "ring-leader" of kids five years older than her? Uh, no.) 

DH finally gets back.  We sit down for a big family dinner, most of which I spend wrangling the kids while DH talks to his relatives.  I finally sit down to eat after fetching plates for the kids, drinks, replacing a dropped fork, another helping of salad for DD, etc.  And before my fork can reach my lips, DH says, "Hey, honey, can you grab me another soda?"

My, "ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?" was heard all across the lake, I believe.  I went back to our cabin alone without eating because I was afraid of having a public hissy fit. The ensuing argument that night was AWFUL.  DH and I usually get along beautifully together.  His way-above-his-usual-behavior obliviousness just caught me on the wrong dang day.  To this day, three years later, DH's relatives still believe we're teetering on the edge of divorce.

If it's any comfort, you were WAY nicer than I would have been in those circumstances. Because I not only would have told my DH to get his own [REDACTED] soda, I'd have told him precisely what to do with it...which probably would have involved shaking the can, shoving it where they have to pump in daylight, and then opening it, with the added hope that the result would be sufficient propellent for him to arrive on the moon. Or possibly Mars.

Thank you, that visual was absolutely hilarious! :) There were moments I was tempted to do that with my DH when my elder 2 were very little.  I love my DH but he can be a bit clueless or just unobservant at times, I think.  I can't tell you how many times we've gone somewhere and while I will give DH this, that he will pack his own clothes, he has at times sat in the van looking at his watch as I got the 2 boys ready. He's better now that we have 3 in that he'll help carry diaper bags and such out to the van and help me make sure I have everything and he'll nag the boys for me to make sure they get their shoes on and out to the van and even buckle the little guy in.

Unfortunately, because this year he doesn't have the vacation time or enough money saved, he's not able to go with us to the beach so it's going to be bff, myself and the 3 boys.  I'm not worried about the boys outnumbering adults because honestly, she's like Mary Poppins, Molly Weasley and Professor McGonagall wrapped into one person so the boys don't mess with her.  In fact we've made it clear to the boys that when we arrive at our campsite, they are not to run off and play, they're old enough at 12 and 10.5 to help set up tents so that mom and auntie aren't doing all the work.

As for keeping the driver awake, for years DH would whine about me falling asleep while he drove so I'd try to keep up a conversation with him so he'd stay awake and I could too but I'd get monosyllabic answers and grunts so I'd stop talking and watch the scenery go by and end up falling asleep.  Which meant he'd gripe again.

I finally said "Look, if you want me to stay awake you're going to have to participate in the conversations and don't give me the "I don't like to talk and drive at the same time.  Talk with me or I stop talking because the grunts and monosyllables lead me to think I'm boring you." **

So now some of our best conversations happen on the road. :)

**Thanks to my mother who told me the cues to know I'm boring someone are "Uh-huh", "yep" other one and two syllable answers. Or just grunts. 
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

lowspark

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #193 on: March 08, 2013, 09:32:56 AM »
I usually listen to books on audio when I have to drive a long distance. It really passes the time and keeps me company without complaining. :) DH always sleeps in the passenger seat (that's why he doesn't do any of the driving - he will fall asleep) so if I had to depend on him to keep talking, I'd be outa luck.

MayHug

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Re: Vacation Dictators.
« Reply #194 on: March 08, 2013, 10:23:54 AM »

Mildly O/T: The boys have been invited to go to Gettysburg with the family of a school friend (not the total flake family from my previous post.) The friends aren't coming back directly, so we're going to have them put the boys on the train to Chicago. Mrs.k2002 and I will meet them there, after visiting her son and his wife in Peoria. We'll all take the train back to Los Angeles.
[/quote]

I live just south of Peoria and my daughter lives in California. I want to take that train sometime! How long of a trip is it?