Friday, July 24, 2015

The More Things Change, the More They... Are Completely Different, Actually

The kids and I arrived in Mayberry yesterday, somewhat prepared to face the first Stampede without Dad. That is going about as well as you may think.

On the bright side, my mom's siblings also arrived to spend the weekend, which, has provided some distraction from my natural tendency to compare this year to years past; this is the first time ever that all eight siblings have been together for the three-day party. They didn't even accomplish that back when they were all growing up-there was over twenty years between the first born and the baby of the family and they all did their own things as they matured into adults.

So, this weekend is pretty special and it is good to see Mom distracted by the chaos.

Last night, I went to the Kelsea Ballerini/Trace Adkins concert with Mom, my six aunts, and my four uncles. Usually, I attend the concert with Phoebe and Reese, but, Reese wasn't able to make the trip from Phoenix this year, and Phoebe is headed to a swim meet in Pueblo later today, so, while I got to see her for a bit last night; I was more or less on my own with the geriatric crew.

The concert was good, and I did enjoy the company, but, afterwards, trying to keep them all together on the trip from the concert venue to the parking lot was about as easy as herding small children. Or, cats.

We made it home, eventually, where I have been ever since. I watched the parade, like usual, but, when it came time to join the clan at the rodeo grounds to watch my niece and brother-in-law compete in the slack (qualifying runs for rodeo activities the rest of the weekend), I was fast asleep on the couch.

There is a rodeo this evening, followed by the dance, and; I actually have no intention of attending either. I miss my comrades. I miss my dad. I miss feeling like Stampede is the greatest weekend in my hometown.

As I've said, the more things change...

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