September 23, 2018

when in Rome? (the Mickey version)

Irish Dancing National Championships are always schedule over July 4th.  They were held in Orlando two short years ago.  For 2018 we were headed back to Orlando!  Why would they schedule  at the same place so soon?  I couldn't justify the cost of visiting the parks in Orlando this time around, but of course I toyed with it.

I don't think I was trying to avoid their faces
 - just a misfire
2016 Splash Mountain. 
Mini's ear, Reggie's shoulder, Curly's curls,
 and that might be my knee or my elbow
blocking Tank's arm.
Back in 2016, I brought the four youngest to Nationals.  Curly was my only dancer eligible to compete that year.  I brought all 4 kids to the parks for two days after Curly danced.  It was a blast.  Exhausting, but fun!

Our former sitter is NOT
wearing a dress.
  He is in the tux.  Curly
was so crazy about
 him (when she was 3)
that he joked with
 me on the dance
 floor at the reception
 that he told his bride
  he suspected Curly wore
 a white dress to the
 wedding mass (she
didn't come to the
 reception) out of protest
 of their wedding.  Ha!
Our former babysitter was getting married this summer on July 7th.  I planned to be back from Orlando for the wedding.  Visiting a theme park during the days leading up to a big competition was out of the question.  I considered squeezing in the Magic Kingdom after the dancing wrapped up on July 4th, but there wasn't much time to pull it off and make the wedding back home. 

I would have felt compelled to bring Reggie along if I added Mickey Mouse to our agenda.  The added cost of another plane ticket plus the added aggravation of having a former Irish dancing brother tag along and be forced to sit thru two days of competition made my head spin.

See -look how much fun we were
 having in 2016!  Awesome smiles in
front of the magic
 carpet ride.  Oh, how I wanted
to go back.  Damn budget.
To cope with my indecisiveness, I lined up the three youngest.  (Sorry, Tank.  He was not being considered for this trip).  I rattled off various scenarios. 

Reggie agreed.  Sitting thru dancing for two days to attend Disney for one day wasn't worth it.  Mini voted loud and clear.  No parks.  She reasoned aloud:  1.  It was too much money.  2.  We had just done Disney.  3.  It would only make me crazy.  (Who me?).  Curly agreed with the other two, but she sort of shot Mini a look that said, 'Hey, are we really turning down Disney here?'

That was it.  Orlando would be limited to a dancing focus only.  Reggie would stay home.  It was Mini's swan song.  She had just made it into Open Championship.  Now this would be her last big competition.  She had never qualified for Nationals until this year.

I packed with my usual budget sense.  Meals and snacks were stored in soft sided coolers inside my checked luggage.  The hotel room had a microwave and a fridge.  Irish dancing was expensive enough -especially when you retire from sewing your kid's Irish dancing dress.  The food part I could control.

Everything was ready to go.  The day before we were leaving Mini sat in our toasty kitchen shivering in a sweatshirt in JULY.  WHAT??!!  She had a fever.  Damn it.  Why is nothing ever simple?

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