My dad and I used to have a tradition. I would walk downstairs at some point after dinner and ask something along the lines of "when are we going to Larry's Dawg House?" and he would tell me we would go after I brought his computer downstairs so he could check his email or update his fantasy baseball team. And then my mom would scoff at the fact that we were going to get soft serve, or whatever the 99 cent ice cream special happened to be that weekend, when there was perfectly good ice cream in the freezer.
I've been home for two weeks, after ten months as an exchange student in Turkey. It is hard to be home, but it's really good at the same time seeing as it's been a while since I've been here. I missed my cat and my room, and even the wallpaper on the kitchen ceiling. For the most part, if I ignore a little dust and some peeling corners, that's all the same.
But today when I went downstairs, and told my dad that I hadn't even asked to go to Larry's in the two weeks that I have been home, and asked if we could please go, he said "There is vanilla ice cream in the freezer. And black berries." And my mom said, "Maybe you can go tomorrow." And the cat looked at me through the front window and yawned. And then everyone went back to their business as if that was that, and that's how it had always been.
Of course, I put up more of a fight than that, but for the first time in a gazillion years, or at least since I could remember (I'm 17) it didn't work. I proceeded to ask my brother if he wanted a hot chocolate chip cookie (there is somewhere for those within walking distance) and he told me yes. When I asked him for five dollars, he told me to "go away."
Maybe everyone is just a lot more health conscious, but judging by the amount of corn chips my family has consumed in the past two weeks that's not it. I told my parents that they weren't any fun and they laughed (which did not help their case) and I was asked where "the entirely changed girl everyone told them would come home" was.
Well, I don't know. I wasn't in for such a changed home. I don't know if everyone is just older and grumpier (the cat certainly is) or if things are just not what I remember. It's probably the latter, but that doesn't make things any easier for me, or for them. I tried to tell my parents that they were being difficult, and I even tried to acknowledge the fact that perhaps I have been a little bit obtuse myself, to which my mother told me that they thought I was just amusing. But to be perfectly honest, I find nothing funny about it, and the only thing that could cheer me up is a twist cone with chocolate dip.