I need a vacation. I am two-fifths through our five-week journey, and I am in need of a vacation. Specifically, I am in need of a vacation from Youngest. Let's say we've been traveling 13 days. I believe that's about right. 13 days X 15 waking hours per day = 195 hours of awake vacation time for him. He has behaved approximately 10 of those hours. That is perhaps a bit too harsh of an indictment. Let's say he has behaved 20 of those hours.
For 175 hours, I have been wanting to strangle the little "savage," as Pete dubbed him and his siblings after one catastrophe in a motorway cafe. About three minutes into our being on top of the Eiffel Tower, Youngest starts in with, "I'm bored." He has picked up a line from "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" and has repeated it endlessly, merely to annoy the crap out of his brother and sister. He needles them. He needles us. He needles, needles, needles, and yet nothing is ever sewn. Except, perhaps, the last threads of my sanity, which our tenuously held together.
* * * *
I know that his antics will fade as time goes by. In a couple of years, when we look back on this vacation, we'll likely only remember the lovely ferry rides to and from France, the delicious crepes and paninis from the sidewalk vendors, the Eiffel Tour, the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo and "real, live dead mummy" at the Louvre, the gloriousness of the Notre Dame, the fabulous flat we rented in Paris, the joyous times we had in Portland with Pete's sister and brother-in-law, and so on and so on and so on of the adventures yet to come in the next three weeks.
However, I will be able to look back at this post and remember the truth behind the faded memories. Then, again, perhaps I'll look at this years from now and be misty-eyed for Youngest, who will surely grow into a confident, able, stubborn-as-all-get-out adult. Whatever happens going forward, we'll always have Paris.