Well, less than a week after returning home from Wisconsin I found myself on a plane headed back to Wisconsin. It's quite possible that you're thinking Wisconsin isn't your ideal summer vacation. I won't lie, if it weren't for family there I doubt I would be going. Trip 2 however was not much of a vacation. You see, we went back to Wisconsin because my younger step-brother died in a car accident. I debated about writing anything about this because, well, it's not fun. I am all about the honesty though, so there it is. It was sudden (obviously) and very hard to handle. I hadn't seen him in several years and was supposed to be seeing him soon. A completely well meaning friend mentioned that it might be easier to handle since I hadn't seen him and been close to him. I knew she meant well so I wasn't angry at all but I realized that you can never put a measure on someone else's grief. I was also reminded of how meaningful it is for someone just to ask "what can i do?" So many friends offered to do whatever I needed and even though there wasn't really anything that anyone could do it meant so much to me. (Thanks again friends!)
There were some good things that came from the accident though and as a family we tried to focus on those. The main "good thing" was that we spent sometime together as a family and it's been a long time since all of us have been in one place. My step brother came from Hawaii, my step sister from California, my parents and younger sister from Colorado and I came from Utah. I don't get to spend much time with my step-siblings, especially my step-sister and I enjoyed the time we had. It was almost like I was 13 again.
Our last full day in Wisconsin was the day of the funeral. As you can probably imagine it was a long and emotionally draining day. The end of the day found Willis, Lanessa and I starving around midnight. The small town we were in had 2 (open) options for food: Wal-Mart and the local Kwik Trip. We opted for the Kwik Trip and had a surprisingly cathartic experience. At this point of the day we were so drained emotionally and mentally we pretty much lost it. Everything was funny. We made friends with the guy who was working, Brucey, who told us we could do whatever we wanted as long as we paid and between the 3 of us we consumed 4 boxes of Pizza Rolls and some various beverages. There were also some embarrassing videos, commemorative Christmas ornaments from 2004, yellow chains, coffee timers and a few other things that were probably only funny if you were there. But trust me, they were funny.
Here are some pictures from our odd night:
The GPS on the iPhone is slightly creepy and makes you feel like the target of a bomb.
That's right. Rock your pop. In the mid-west it's not soda, it's pop.
I would (still) like to see that cup.
Brucey, who loved us. Natch.
Representing the WI.
The Family. My little sister is standing on a stool which I do not support because it makes her look so much older to me.
It should be known that my step brother is an expert Ro Sham Bo-er but during this trip I beat him TWICE. And after the first time he told me I wouldn't beat him again. It was very intense.