We spent our traditional turkey day the way we have for several years now, eating something quick (this year was hot dogs and macaroni and cheese) and then watching movies until bedtime. We decided a few years back that the meal is less important than the time we spend together, and our own little tradition was born. I love it.
The following morning, we headed out on our first ever Thanksgiving weekend family trip. Our oldest opted not to go, because she had schoolwork she had put off for her entire break, but the rest of us piled into the car and headed west to a car swap.
My middle girl, who has shown the most interest in my husband’s project car, was extremely excited to walk the buildings full of dirty, dusty, oily car parts with my husband while I promised my son we would go do something that we found more interesting.
After sitting in bumper-to-bumper traffic for over an hour (who knew it was a bad idea to be in Columbus on a weekend that Ohio State has a home game) we finally were able to drop the automotively inclined half of our group at their destination and head to our own.
We had decided to check out the Center of Science and Industry. We were able to learn a lot about the human body and view interesting X-rays, feel what tornado-force wind sare like, watch trained rats play basketball and play an organ that burps.
Wait, did I say rats playing basketball? Yes. Trained rats. They grabbed the little ball and slam dunked it in little hoops, all for the promise of Cheerio bits being fed to them at the back of the arena. One rat was more food motivated than the other, and she kept stealing the ball from the other rat to try to make extra baskets. It was quite amusing and, of course, the audience learned a little bit of science from the event as well.
But, no matter how cool layup-making rats are, you know that organ was my preteen son’s favorite thing in the building, right? More exciting than trained creatures, more awesome than 78 mph winds, better than X-rays of puppies not yet born, was a musical instrument whose every key signified a bodily noise.
Perhaps his band teacher will be proud to know that my kiddo practiced his school music over break on this device.
“Hot Cross Buns,” burped to perfection.
The dreisel song, farted in exact key.
Other pieces were spit, sneezed, coughed and armpit-noised into existence and punctuated by real-life laughing that only a young boy can produce. His laughter was incredibly contagious though, and I caught it. We laughed long and hard over his musical skills before heading off to lunch at a little German delicatessen that we discovered accidentally when we got lost looking for an entirely different place.
It was an awesome day. That afternoon, we met back up with the car contingent and had dinner. Then the kids went swimming for a while before we all crawled into our beds and went to sleep. The next evening, we headed home.
I hope your Thanksgiving was as blessed as mine. I am truly grateful.