This year has been incredible. The recent two weeks of vacation that I took has went down as THE BEST time that I've had in my life so far. It was kind of hectic, but I made it all work. Last year my good friend Steven planned a trip to Miami for his 30th birthday and I confirmed my attendance. I paid my portion of the town house that we rented, I was all set to go. But then, shortly after, my mom told me that our family reunion was coming up and it was set for the same weekend as Miami. I was like shit, god damn! How can I pay for two trips back to back like that? At one point, I told the Miami group that I wouldn't be able to go because I didn't want to be broke and have to depend on anyone for anything while I'm vacationing. So I figured out a master plan. I left work on June 20th. The next two days, I did Uber like a mad man because I needed spending money for the following week. I made a good $200 in two nights which was pretty damn good. I was satisfied with that and it was more than enough. But you will read more about Miami in another post, this one will be all about the family reunion
That following Thursday, my family and I flew out to Portland for the Family Reunion. We were traveling between Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington as my family lives in both states. There are literally 10-15 minutes away from one another. I enjoyed seeing my family! Some of them I hadn't seen in years. We all caught up, ate good food, played some cards, gambled a bit and went out for the drinks. I definitely enjoyed myself. A few times I caught myself thinking about that past but I had to snap out of it. I did so by just taking walks and just absorbing the pretty green environment that was there.
My great-grandmother and great aunt were overseeing this family reunion. Mind you, she was 85 years young. She still drives, cooks, and still gets around. But for the majority of my family to be up there and not help with hosting, cooking and planning was just terrible. My mom few in and went right to work. She cooked, cleaned, did laundry, we helped with little things like going to the stores and running errands. But that shouldn't have bee the case when the majority of the family is up there. But that didn't take away from the fun that I had. I also found out that it was legal to buy weed there. They have vending machines on mostly every major corner. I took a picture of a bag that my cousin bought.
Two eventful things happened to me while I was there. I had my first experience with racism and I was pulled over by the cops.
The racism happened as my family and I were preparing the clean the venue that was rented for the family reunion In order to get the deposit back we had to clean the place. That was no problem. I decided to mop the floors. I went to get the mop bucket and the handle that is used to squeeze the water out of the mop was broken. I was not about to use my hands on that thing so I went to ask the man who was on duty for a new bucket He told me that it was the only one. I told him that I couldn't mop without a proper bucket, so I will only mop what I can and after that no more. So I started to walk off with the mop and I left the bucket behind. He took the broken handle off of the bucket and said "do you want me to hit you over the head with this handle boy? Take the bucket with you!". Me being me, I paused, and then ignored it. I walked to the kitchen where the rest of my family was and sure enough, he followed me there with the bucket. I turned around and I told him again that I can't mop with a broken mop bucket and I'm not mopping the floors. This man clapped his hands at me pointed to the floor and shouted "You're gonna mop these floor BOY!" That's when the world stopped.
My mom looked at me, snatched that god damn mop out of my hands and looked at the man and she went OFF! She said "he was about to mop but he's not mopped a DAMN thing!" She looked at me and said "lets go!" Then she turned back to the man and was like "Who the hell do you think you're talking to?! He is a grown ass man, you don't clap your hands at my son and call him a boy!!" Then one of my cousin's friends was going off, it was all kinds of chaos. The man apologized and was saying that he didn't mean it in a racist way and that he was referring to me as a kid when he called me boy, but my family wasn't buying that story. Not at all. After the dust settled, the man went back to his front desk and set in silence as we finished cleaning the room. If there was no deposit on the place, we would have left it the way it was, especially after the incident. SMH.
That same night, we left the facility and went back to my grandmother's house. After we got there, we all relaxed for a little bit, unloaded the cars and everything. Then it was time to take people home. So I was appointed to drive my great-aunt home with the help of an older cousin who lived in Washington. We all got in the car, and my aunt decided that she would drive there, and I was going to drive back. I got in that back seat and feared for my life lmao! She was driving that jeep like she was dodging bullets. She had her small dog in the back seat with me, and the dog is soooo stuck up. The bitch didn't want anyone touching it. But during that drive, you better believe that it hopped out of her princess throne to sit in-between my legs because she got scared. After a good 20 minutes, she made it to her place. We unpacked the car and she was on her way. So it was my turn. I got into the drivers seat. I thought that I was driving fine, I was doing the speed limit and everything. I get onto the expressway and I gets pulled over instantly. I was thinking in my head " where were you 10 minutes ago when my aunts was driving like a bat out of hell?"
He pulled me over, told me that I was going 15 miles over the limit while turning on the expressway. He asked me if I had been drinking and if I was drunk? He asked for my license and registration. I told him that the truck was a rental in my great-grandmother's name and I didn't know where the paper work was kept. I eventually found it, everything checked out. he left me off with a warning because I wasn't "from" there and didn't know the rules to the road. All I could think about was things going left. All the police stories that are out there, so I complied with everything thing that he asked and didn't give him any problems are any reason to think that something fishy was going on. We eventually made it back and the rest as you say was history.
I enjoyed myself there. Portland and Vancouver are beautiful cities and I must go back, especially to spend more time with my family! See some pictures I took and my beautiful family below!
The 2017 Family Reunion will be here in Chicago!! The planning has already begun!