My mother turns 80 today. Fuck me, how old does that make me? I remember when she was in her 40s (before that I’m not so sure what I can remember). That’s younger than I am now. We would be celebrating, but she and my dad when to France. They’re like the Kranks, leaving town when there are things to celebrate. In fact, It’s later there, so in a couple of hours, it won’t even be her birthday anymore. She got an early start. She couldn’t wait. She’d been waiting all her life and she couldn’t wait 6 more hours so she had to go be in Strasbourg for it. Hey, I’m for it. Do what you want on your birthday. And no crying. Sometimes kids cry on their birthdays, that’s all I mean by that. No one should cry on their birthdays, ideally. She will return and she will still be 80 so we will have our chance to celebrate after she returns.

Me and my brothers and my sister flirted with the idea of flying there just for the day to surprise her. Many things appealed to me about this idea. It was crazy, for one. Automatically gets a bump from me for being just crazy enough to talk about for the rest of your lives and laugh. Also, it is a milestone event, and so something greater than dinner out seemed in order. It would be a trip with my adult siblings the likes of which we have never done and likely will never do. It would involve flying, renting a car, driving together, surprising mom and then the same thing but in reverse. It would be short, too short for us to really get on each others nerves, one would hope. But it would be expensive for such a short trip, and not really worth it unless we could all do it, and there is the possibility that Mom went to Europe to avoid something like that. In any case, the logistics didn’t work out, so we’ll do something later. Dinner. We’ll make it special somehow.

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