Last night at 11pm, I left all three boys at Juan Santamaría airport. All getting on the same airplane. If you are a neurotic, that makes for an anxious day fighting off dread premonitions. Not that I’m a neurotic. I’m just saying if YOU are, I’ve heard about people like you. How you obsessively check the airline flight status and if you get an internet error saying something like, "No more information available about this flight," you might reel into a panic. Because, you know, your entire life is on one airplane being held up over the deep, wide ocean by… what, exactly? AIR??? Right. Like air could keep up an airBUS. That is the lamest thing I ever heard. I’m just saying I feel for you neurotics.

Fortunately for me, the boys were on the red-eye. Their plane didn’t even leave the ground till 1am; I’m usually deep into REM by that time. I fell asleep about three minutes after their plane took off and woke this morning an hour after it landed. No chance to to exercise OCD behaviors.

Bolivia_the_old_yungus_roadAnd please don’t tell me "they are safer flying than driving." They happen to be driving the world’s most dangerous highway right this minute: US1, FLL to EYW. And that after a night of very little sleep. Good thing Hal has Mo to keep him awake. About six months after Mo started talking, we got him one of those Help I’m Talking And I Can’t Shut Up t-shirts. Nothing has changed in that arena, except now his voice carries across a 3500sf house even when he’s whispering.

They’ll spend a day in EYW picking up camping gear, then drive for almost three days to a week-long rifle marksmanship course. (Turn down your volume if you click the link… some nice Civil War drums in the background.) According to the course manual, "if you go to a boot camp and don’t have one of the best times of your life, something is wrong with you and you need professional help." Who could resist that? (Uh, me.)

Rifle_randiJoining them at boot camp are future Costa Rica expats Robert, the dad, old like us Hal, and Jacob, the son, teen like the boys. Randi, the mom, smart like me, is home planning a raucous week with the wild and crazy Willow, no doubt.Wild_and_crazy_willowjpg  Randi did pose for us with the rifle Robert and Hal bought in preparation. (Believe it or not, there weren’t enough rifles to go around! Don’t tell the NRA, they’ll throw us out.) The bayonet is a nice touch, eh? My guys spent more money on ammunition for this week than on the whole rest of the trip combined. But whatever floats their boat.

Me? I’m here with my mom, the TV remote, three dogs who adore me and who (whom?) I can have in the house all day everyday if I want (this makes Hal crazy). And a hankering for some fun. As long as I’m home before 6pm which leaves just enough time for dinner and a TV show before bed, I’m lookin’ to get pretty crazy. Oh. And I have a pistol. With real bullets, so don’t be sneaking up on me.

Here’s the best part about being without the boys. Right off the bat, the maid comes today so the house will be CLEAN for more than 15 minutes. And – this is so thrilling, I can hardly speak – when I put something down and go back for it in an hour, two hours, an entire day later, it will still be there.

Bask in that for a moment.

If I bought juice or ice cream or cookies today (which I won’t because I’m still on this diet which is going beautifully), there would still be some tomorrow. There won’t be any dirty clothes around the hamper. Just in the hamper. Living with teenage boys is like living with a gang of Pigpens. There’s a world of crap everywhere: wadded up tissues, wadded up unmatched socks under the furniture, ipods, cords, cables, dirty plates, glasses on every surface with melted something in them, open jars of peanut butter in their rooms, books lying around, keyboards covered in crumbs and something sticky. And sounds: TV, Everlast, Santana (yeah, they discovered Santana…), Eminem. Bickering, then raucous laughter, then Ryan yelling, "Stop! STOP!!! MAAAAAHHHHMMMMMMM, Mo’s       (insert annoying behavior here)      ."

Ok. I have to stop. I’m starting to miss them.

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