Day Two of our New York Adventure was mostly a free day to do what we wanted… as long as it fit within the group’s itinerary.
The day started with a big breakfast at the hotel. I was among the first to arrive in the dining room. I nodded to the few kids and adults who were already there and filling their faces then made a bee line for the coffee. Taking a seat at a table near the back of the room, I patiently waited for the girls to arrive. The last of Cup of Coffee Number Two was washing down my gullet just as Abby finally entered the room.
The Best Goddaughter in the World spotted me then came over to give me a kiss and a hug after wishing me a good morning. She asked how my morning was going, how good the coffee was, and what was available for breakfast. My answers were “Good”, Good”, and “Coffee”. She gave me a typical Abby-look before shaking her head and patting the top of mine. “I’ll be back,” she promised before heading to food line. “Don’t go anywhere.”
Maggie finally showed up while Abby was in line. Her greeting and litany of questions were virtually identical to those posed by Abby. Abby was back at the table in time to hear Maggie ask me about my coffee and the breakfast options. My identical responses made Abby laugh. Maggie wasn’t satisfied, though, and insisted that I needed more than coffee for breakfast. I was very close to telling her “No”, but I’d played this little game with the girls enough times that they knew what to expect.
“I don’t want to hear your bullshit,” Maggie declared as she grabbed me by the hand and led me to the food line. I used my size advantage only long enough to grab my coffee cup for Cup of Coffee Number Three. I looked to Abby for help. She offered none.
“Yeah, Maggie!” was her only offering. Her betrayal was so icy cold that it took Cup of Coffee Number Four to fight off the chill.
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We were soon back on the bus and preparing to head back to Manhattan for our day of sightseeing. Something was delaying our departure and the kids on the bus were getting antsy. The boys to my right were particularly worked up. They were joking and laughing and hootin’ and hollerin’. The kid in the aisle seat seemed to be the biggest clown of the group. I couldn’t decide if he was funny or getting on my nerves.
I turned around in my seat to ask Maggie the identity of the comedian.
“That’s Adam,” she told me. “He’s Dylan’s brother.”
“What?” I questioned. “Nuh uh. They’re nothing alike.” Like Maggie, Dylan was a senior. I’d been aware of and witness to the young man for as long as I’d been watching Maggie in show choir. He always struck me as a good and polite kid, nothing at all like this mouthy punk sitting across from us. As annoying as he was starting out this morning he was threefold that amount the previous day.
Maggie shot back with a “Yuh huh” then drew Elaine into the conversation. “Hey, Elaine?” she said in a hushed tone. “Who is Adam’s brother?”
“Dylan,” was Elaine’s one-word response.
“Toldya,” Maggie told me.
“But Dylan seems like a good kid. This kid’s a smartass,” I said.
“Exactly. That’s why you should like him,” Maggie responded. “He’s just like you.”
Day One of the trip was filled with Maggie abusing me physically with her constant swatting of my shoulder. This morning she broke out the verbal abuse.
The worst part about it?
She was one hundred percent right.
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