Communication is no my family's strongest suit.
The other reason I called was to bitch at her for not giving me more notice about the fact that she was having the whole family out for Christmas at her place this year. If she had mentioned it prior to her blanket email finalizing the plan, we could have arranged some vacation time. She says that if it works out this year, she may do it again next year. Sadly, I doubt she would get the same perfect storm next year. It worked out that everyone in my family can manage to make it out this year ... except for me. If I had got more notice, it could have been the first Christmas in over 20 years where we had the whole family together - well, with the notable exception of dad, who would obviously only be attending in memory this year.
I've lived away from them for so many years that sometimes it's easy to forget how much I miss my family. I've spent Christmas with atara's family, but she has never had the opportunity to spend it with mine. We may be a surly bunch of dysfunctional misfits, but I love them dearly, and I'm really sad about missing this opportunity. I daresay I may spend the next few couple of days wallowing in self-pity and feeling lonely and remote.
Fortunately MFF is coming up very shortly, and that will probably take my mind off things. I will be very busy taking down lists of petty grievances to air at the closing ceremonies. I have been to enough cons to know that the volunteers who run it love nothing more than to hear how anybody else could have run it better. No ball pit? That's worth at least five minutes of my rant time. No oldies at the fursuit rave? Blasphemy! Gravy at the sponsor buffet is only 119F? Rest assured there will be a sternly-worded letter to the hotel, copying the convention staff! Refuse to dispatch a gopher to retrieve the room card that I accidentally dropped in the toilet? There will be some terse words about that at the closing ceremonies!
On the logistics side, we have booked our vacation time, bought our memberships, reserved our hotel room, confirmed our flights, and arranged for a cat-sitter. He says that the cats do not always stay sitting, but sometimes it seems like the cats have wills of their own. All that is left to do is charge up our camera batteries, pack our suitcases and hit the road.
I have to admit that MFF crept up on me this year. I have been so utterly slammed by my job lately on so many levels that I haven't had the time to give it enough thought to be excited about its approach. It feels unreal to me that we will actually be flying out of here in a couple of days. Two more sleeps. I guess a small part of me is still waiting for one of the executive directors to pull me into a meeting room and tell me that they are cancelling my vacation because it might cause delays in this dreadful project I've been on.