putting the US into USA

Well… been over a week now and all seems well. No drastic changes between either of us so I guess its safe to say that we are still the same people we were before sporting rings on our fingers.

The flights were all fine. The swift run to the hotel was fine too, and the room we had was functional, with an enormous bed… lol… although on check-in.. they politely enquired if it would be ok if we had a room with 2 beds in… which was greeted with a resounding “No!” from E! Actually, in truth, there was nothing really to complain about at all. The view from the room window could’ve been better, but when you have free passes up to the second highest free-standing building in the usa available, i don’t think grumbling about what was basically only  visible for times of changing clothes, sleeping, and the other things couples do on wedding holidays, (ahem!!) was of any use.

The weather… was toasty… mid 70s all the time… not too hot, not cold enough for jumpers. Palm trees and blue sky’s, low humidity, actually pretty much all we could’ve wanted, especially for early March.

The chapel… was just down the road, and was pretty, the people, enthusiastic and polite, while knowing their business. 8 pics turned into 28, most of which are presentable, and the service was also amiable, serious but with a underlying humour as the minister seemed to realise we knew what we wanted and this was a formality, albeit one we’d decided on taking, and therefore conducted it with a smile. The formalities of Apostille’s and other piffle were/are being taken care of for us, and generally everything went off without a hitch (cept us two of course.. Hitch? Hitched? No…? Ah well… lmao).

The casino’s were not as busy as I expected, and the drinks eventually began to come our way with surreptitious hopeful glances at waitresses! Circus circus gave us a welcome rest as we walked the full length of the strip! The view from the tower was nothing short of spectacular. 6/7miles seemed a stones throw away. and the mountains surrounding us… must have been far further than they seemed. Starbucks was cheaper than the UK thankfully lol…but then fuel is so much cheaper of any kind over there. A few people commented on the Arsenal / Scotland shirts… and we got to drink Boddies and Abbot ale  and catch the Arsenal Wigan game in The Crown and Anchor on the outskirts of Las Vegas, which also treated us to “but not a real green dress thats cruel”. Asides from the flight, sudoku’s and A short history of Tractors in Ukrainian stayed in E’s bag, probably time travelling, and like a busy prostitute we were occupied pretty much all day everyday! I probably would’ve text’d a few people but my sis called and wiped out 15 euro of credit. grr! lol Oh.. she also called at 4am the morning we were getting married! grrr again! lol It’s just as well there were no nerves! She also congratulated us lots… problem now is.. what’s she gonna do with that hat? lol

The people, in general, were fine who we talked to, which consisted of non-americans mostly ( E spoke to a couple of dutch peeps and us both to the footy fans) and the ones who we didn’t seemed rude! “Gimme this”, “I want that”, instead of “please may I”, or “Could i have please”.

I should also sling in a mention of a double bassist… who.. while we sat opposite the Bellagio drinking Newcastle Brown, proceeded to pluck out the opening to Smoke on the Water! Class!

Philly was a bit of an arse over tit cock up. Having spoken about meeting old friends there over the 2 weeks before leaving for the states, and having caught flights that meant we had 4 hours sleep, but at least 13 hours free to accommodate them finding their way down and us finding them when they arrive, we landed in Philly at a delightful 6.30am, and caught a train into the centre at just gone 7. The other people on the train looked like zombies… something purely out of a Romero film. At 9am however, we get texts, saying they can’t make it, so trot off around the city (Yes we saw the Liberty bell… it’s a bell.. ummm.. so what? lol) and then wind up in the art museum at the top of the rocky steps, which i would’ve run up on general principal cept that while on the flight, I managed to pull an Eduardo, smashing my toe into a metal seat strut. On examination, having peeled off the then bloody sock, my little toe nail was split almost clean down the middle to near the base, not unlike what you see happen to photographs of couples when one rips the other person off! It hurt like a bitch… lol.. and still does, n doubtless will take months to grow out. On reaching the art museum… other texts arrive, “saying we’ll be with you at 4”, having left at 1pm. Now i know, it’s a family, and its a distance, but… that’s kinda like 4 hours wasted. I’d mailed saying, “pick a place,  and we’ll find you” the day before, but nothing was done. Still, we headed back to the airport and waited, and still no sign. In the end we gave up, and headed through customs, only for me to be stopped and singled out, meaning it took far longer than expected. In truth we were fortunate that, had we’ve gone off somewhere and come back leaving the minimum amount of time, we’d have possibly not made it to the flight. Then, eventually, back in Amsterdam, we get a bunch of texts via E’s phone sent throughout the day the day before. Thank You vodafone for your help… grrr. It seems they got to the airport after we went through customs, and are doubtless pissed at us now, but such is life. We were thousands of miles away from home on our wedding / honeymoon, and also running on coffee and pretzels with 4 hour’s sit down in 36hours. They were under 200 miles away with 2 weeks to play with.  All I asked was they pick a destination and we’d try and get there, and that didn’t happen.

Anyways… we got to E’s parents fine, to do battle with cats. Her dad congratulated her…, then left us to play animal trappers! Eventually E’s mum came in, and was brilliant, congratulated us both… looked at rings n inscriptions etc, and then took us home.. sans cats who were in a strop! The next day (thursday) we returned, and again failed to recapture the cats! Unbelievable hissy bitey scratchy nasty balls of death! lol However I did manage to get the wedding pics across to E’s parents. Friday, we returned again… and finally managed to grab them (nothing like a solid pair of ski gloves and a cat sized crate to negate feline ferociousness lmao), and showed E’s mum the black n white versions of two of the wedding pics. That evening E’s sis n bro-in-law came online, and, cos i’d tried to send them the pics a day earlier, they asked what it was we were trying to send them. When told, they still refused to receive them. E’s made a few excuses but frankly I don’t think there are any. Basically they couldn’t be arsed to spend a couple of minutes to share in their in sisters happiness. Not impressed.

Saturday came, and we headed over to E’s grans… or my gran’s now… lol… for her birthday. 84!! now that’s an impressive age. having no hard copies of the wedding pics we showed the mini versions via E’s phone to the people there, and E’s dad slipped out that he’d not seen the proper ones yet, because he “didn’t have time”. 26 pictures of his daughters wedding… on the pc at home… saved 2 days earlier… and he didn’t have time to look at them. How long does it take?? Again… not impressed. I’m glad i don’t speak dutch, because I would’ve said something, and frankly, seen as how I am now family, I think it’s my right TO say something. Although, as E said afterwards, gran’s birthday isn’t really the venue for that.

Not that I can really say much I guess. Look at my family. Sis is the only one I actually speak to. Dad’s dead, the only time i would call the woman who gave birth to me “Mother” these days is if the next word happened to be “fucker” (think S L Jackson style lol) and my brothers… lol… brother indicates a relationship, and I don’t see one. What do I know about how families work? It’s been over 25 years since I was in the same room as all of mine at once.

Yet I’m sat here… and within seconds of typing the sentences above… E asks from the sofa, “are you ok?”, presumably picking up on my vibes,  and the random music radio switches to The Proclaimers… “And if i haver… I’m gonna be the man who’s havering to you!!”. So what do I know about families? Allow me to haver… lol! I know this… The one which we’ve started, E and Me, will be built on communication, sharing of thoughts and feelings. her listening to me and my thoughts of what’s wrong and right, and vice versa so that, the family we make, even if it is just the two of us, is open, both being approachable to the other, “why did you do that” being a question that is not going to produce scary awkward answers, rather a greater understanding. That’s not to say I think we’ll live in our own utopia, never fighting. That’s unrealistic.  But, doing things, or not doing things, to cause hurt, or to spite, or even just purely through inconsideration… to the people we’re supposed to love (i.e. us.. our kids… favour one sibling against another) well..I just don’t see that in our future. I can remember people asking me why I would offer to help others with their pc’s when they’ve been prats to me beforehand and I’d explain that I did it because it was something I could do for someone. E is of a similar disposition.

This is turning into an essay!. I’m sat looking at it wondering what good it will actually do to post the last chunk of this and thinking maybe i should’ve sliced it at smoke on the water! There’s much in here which many could pick up n and think Grrrr at, or feel aggrieved, but this is my blog. It’s an account of how I feel. If people choose to read it, then they must be prepared to see things that they may not like. Or they could see opportunities… to learn. To communicate. I actually have what I want now anyway, irrespective of anyone else cept Esther, everything else can be seen as either bonuses, or garnish depending on your point of view. If you’re like Ben Elton and me, you hate garnish… lol… but i’m a big fan of bonuses! It’s up to me how i choose to view people, but if you turn up wearing a slice of lemon costume and smelling of fish, rather than a huge great “10 extra spins” sign, well… you can guess the rest.

Thanks to Ju, Lesley, and the various people on vip/facebook for all the congrats…

It’s late. My wife is curious now what I’ve written and I think I’m all out of words for tonight. So.. til next time…



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