Cocktail Hour

My parents are good to us. They’re good to each other, too. They have been married for twenty-seven years, and anyone can tell by looking at them that they are more in love than ever. I want that in my life. And I know that I’ve found it with James.

They might have their quirks and small irritating habits, but they are my parents and love me as much as any parent has ever loved a child. After they visit and leave, I like to reflect on how happy it makes me to spend time with them. I always get sad to see them go, though. I always wish that we lived closer, so that we wouldn’t have to cram months worth of togetherness into a weekend. But this way, the time is always a little bit extra special. That’s the bright side.

I loved reading my poetry for them. I was scared out of my head, and my throat was dry as I got started, but I knew how proud they would be to hear me share my talents. Since they buy all the food and dinner, even paid for a tank of gas and tipped us for chauffeuring them to the airport, I felt like this was the least I could do to give something back. Well, the reading and the dancing with my mom at Houlihan’s last night.

I let them buy me martinis and stock our liquor cabinet with vodka, tequila and Kahlua. I let them pick the restaurants and try to think of entertaining places for us to go. I think the most fun thing about this weekend, though, was just sitting around our small apartment, drinking coffee or looking at wedding photos, talking about our family and life in general. I enjoy their company, which is a wonderful thing. When you’re growing up under their roof and their rules, you can’t even fathom this kind of relationship with parents. I’m lucky to have it, I know. And I’m grateful for their example, confident in myself and my relationships because they are confident in me, proud even. I don’t know what more I can say.

I am sad that they are gone already, the weekend went so fast, and I can’t put off this homework any longer, but I’m happy for the time we got to share. The National Gallery was great, all the lunches and dinners and drinks probably helped me put on a few more pounds I don’t want to think about having to deal with, but they were also very delicious and worth it. The meals were more than just food on a fork, you know. The weather was amazing all weekend, walking on King Street and doing some shopping, the reading, the dancing, all fun. We laughed a whole lot. I can’t wait until the next visit. I still feel a little drunk.

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