Friday, April 29, 2011

Aunt with OCD

I had a super fun weekend with my 'family of origin', cousins from Norway, and of course my little clutch. We were roughing it in a cabin in the Central Washington but not really roughing it like camping.

It's my aunt and uncle's cabin, and as they have never had kids, they can be very particular about their things. Also very particular about waste management: garbage, recycling, food scraps. The process of throwing things away requires a very time consuming sorting process and a steep learning curve on their many processes.

It's as though they are living in the great depression, saving every scrap of junk for potential use later. They gave us stinky, flimsy, ancient towels to use in the bathroom that you wouldn't even use as a rag. They are not poor by any means either. They both have advanced degrees and are execs in the banking industry. She put me in charge of the dinner one night and came behind meand scraped my empty cans for a few extra tablespoons of its contents.

I think if she saw how many disposable diapers we used on our trip, she would have a cardiac arrest. I felt like I had to stash my garbage like contraband. Every paper plate was gathered up and set aside for the bonfire, every drop of grease captured and contained in an old whip cream tub and every empty beer/wine bottle confiscated.  She wore the same black pants every day and some very old Christmas turtleneck and sweater - even though it was Easter.  I am by no means a fashion expert or beauty queen, but I know that would alert the fashion police.

One time she screamed at my littlest Chickadee for jumping around in the kitchen.  I'm not exaggerating. It was more than a yell; it was a prolonged shouting rant.  I'm sorry, but kids are sometimes wild and unruly. Actually, they are often.  I don't have the energy to constantly chastise  them for their natural instincts - they tune me out. So my aunt went ballistic and immediately the mood was uncomfortable.  It brought back memories from childhood when I didn't feel welcome to be a kid in their home either. Always being lectured.  And I thought they were soooo dull.  One time as an adult they let us use their car for a few days. To thank them, we filled up the tank with gas.  She had a fit because we didn't write down the odometer miles because she tracks it on a spreadsheet.   I never hear her crack a joke or laugh out loud, which to me is absolutely unacceptable. I love to joke around.

Now they're talking about us buying their house from them so we'll have it in our family another generation. Honestly, I would instantly upgrade everything because I have no tolerance for 70's appliances and 1900's doors, walls, counters, windows, steps, patios, fixtures.  Since they're too cheap (I mean frugal) to have functional, attractive digs.  The place is always frigidly cold, so I have to sleep in a hat and gloves when I sleep over. The pillows and matresses feel like stones.  C'mon, splurge on some comforts!

That's my rant for the week.  Until next time someone aggravates me....

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