...from St. John, Newfoundland. And, can I just say right now, I LOVED this trip except for the dry-drunkard, know-it-all, Little-Man-Syndromer that we were semi-forced to drive to the Manchester Airport with and then subsequently fly with to and from St. John, Newfoundland. Let's call him...well, "Dog Shit on My Heel" is just too long - appropriate, yes, but too long. Geez, this is a tough one! How about "Scrappy?" A little guy, always looking for a fight, yet small enough to kick like a football.
Okay, my idiot tolerance is very low and that is not my fault. It is genetic. I come from a long line of Scottish-Russians with giant bony heads, tippy-in Eskimo tailbones (it's true - call my chiropractor), and an extremely low tolerance for stupidity or light-weight drinkers who can't put down a fifth of Scotch or Vodka without puking or passing out - - or worse - - sharing.
So here's Scrappy, about my height, all of 5'3", weighing a buck twenty soaking wet, with "dirty fighter" written all over him. He's totally going to go for your eyes and your nuts, and not necessarily in that order. So, Scrappy starts out in the car ride to Manchester by asking me - NO BY TELLING ME that I voted for Obama. Well, you pesky little dick head, you. This "man" is a business associate of my hub's, and not one he particularly likes and I know this. However, I can hear my lovely and demure mother's voice in the back of my head telling me to be polite or she'll knock my block off. So I'm polite against all odds and desires. I respond through smiley gritted teeth with a constrained-yet-politely-sarcastic response, and he changes topics all on his own to the fishing industry and starts ranting and raving. I glance over at my utterly tolerant husband and I see his eyes are rolling around in his head, so I'm satisfied that I'm not alone in my misery. I am silently wishing, however, that my car didn't have one of those new "Get the f--k out of the trunk free" glow-in-the-dark safety pull tab devices.
Blah, blah, blah, we finally get to Newfoundland after fog and delays. Scrappy and my sweet hubby get off to their fishing workshop just fine and I stagger jet-lagged and sleep deprived off to bed. Shit-heel keeps on doing his dry-drunk routine, telling me I smile too much and querying "just why I am so happy?" Well, just keep talking jackass and you'll f--k that all to hell eventually.
On Day Four, he finally pushes it to the edge of beyond. At breakfast he says, and I quote, "I know too much." [Insert meaningful and knowing tilt of the head and jutted chin....] Oh, spare me and just jump, you asshole. He's not jumping; he's sitting at our breakfast table in the Marriott dining room. He begins ranting for fifteen minutes ending by saying rather loudly "You should be involved in this too, Joni!! You can't hide your head in the sand, you know!," See, I've been just eating my breakfast during this tirade, basically ignoring him, and that's gotten Scrappy's diaper all wet, poopy-filled or up his crack. What I'm getting at is he's been made to feel like no one's listening BECAUSE NO ONE IS LISTENING. Now, at this point I quietly get up from the table - - seriously, I just say nothing and get up - - and go into the little computer area where I send off a missile of an e-mail to Abella spewing expletives left and right with a speed and pressure that would turn carbon into diamonds in a nanosecond. Upon finally returning to the table, hubby and I are exchanging looks that any carbon-based life-form would recognize as meaningful, but Scrap-meister actually has the cahones to say "I think I made Joni mad" and "I think your wife is angry at me." He says both of these things at least twice each. Can you even f--king believe that? Well, it's true. At this point, my hubby suggests that we both return to the room before he leaves for his fishing workshops that day.
Okay, I'm not made of stone. We return to the room and my resolve crumbles. I begin crying and now hubby is FINALLY showing some anger at this jerk. I've been trying so hard not to be rude to this guy for my husband's sake, and just for general mature polite behaviour's sake. All of this appears to escape Scrappy's notice or concern. To call him a Neanderthal would be an insult to evolution. This guy was "shit on a rock and hatched by the sun," as my sweet and demure mother would say.
Luckily for me, St. Johns, Newfoundland is a treasure of a town, and they have magnificent hiking trails just blocks from the hotel. At all costs, I must clear my psyche of anything and everything having to do with this morning's unpleasantness, so I started off for the Sentinal Hill hike. Not for the faint of heart, scared of heights, weak of knees, or badly out of shape, this hike is all business.
The first sight I encounter is Cape Spear, the northern-most point in North America. By way of background, this is the very first day of four that the sun has even shone, and it is forecast to be short-lived. This hiking trail is alive with people of all ages and all abilities. The wind blows mightily across these barren rocks and the beautiful pewter and feather-white sea. I have to fight to keep my footing just to take a picture or two once atop Sentinal Hill, which I find kind of funny but have no one to share my silliness with. Bracing my feet as far apart as they'll go without committing an act of treason to my hamstrings, I take glorious pictures of the ocean, skyline and carefully restored architecture. The buffeting wind is enough to, as my witty and articulate Dad would say, "Blow a sick whore off a piss pot." Ah, such a poet! How I miss you, you funny, quirky man.
The remainder of the trip was uneventful as Scrappy had been neutered, of sorts, coming to some realization all by his little teeny tiny self that he'd overstepped the bounds of normal and polite human interaction. Or possibly he'd spoken to his wife on the phone, relaying the situation to her, and she'd told him what a f--king dolt he was. Hard tellin'.
We plan to return to Newfoundland next summer when we can really spend some time vacationing, hiking and mellowing out with the warm, welcoming people. And, next time we'll make a point to get "screeched in" and become honorary Newfoundlanders by kissing the cod, downing the Screech, and reciting the requisite phrase: "Long may your big jib draw the ol' cocky, mate!"