Humor Non-Fiction posted November 13, 2016

This work has reached the exceptional level
A continuing story with chapter links in Notes section.

Nashville Trashville-Chapter 4

by Mary Wakeford

The author has placed a warning on this post for language.
A fun-filled weekend in Nashville with my adult children provided an opportunity forty years later to revisit a little town named McEwen where I spent the summer of 1971 being a crappy housekeeper for my uncle, the newly installed pastor as St. Patrick's Catholic Church and school.  What could possibly go wrong?

The reveal of my daughter's, "SURPRISE, I got a tattoo on my torso" engineered by a friend's brother no less; followed by having a little too much to drink at a wedding, leaving a tad tipsy for a reception after-party on Printers Alley with a gaggle of strangers, and her brother across town hitting the downtown bar scene.  

This mama was over it, and just when I thought it couldn't get any worse, it did...  

Following my husband's pep talk loaded with 'You can do this's and 'Don't be so hard on her's' we ended the conversation as not to further compromise my nearly dead phone battery as well as my sanity, both hovering at 20%.

I flipped on the t.v. to see if a world crisis might help me appreciate the fact things weren't as bad as they could be. I'm no psychologist, but that type of therapy works nine times out of ten for me.

Brunhilda was fascinated with the cooking pot on the 'sell me anything' channel. Just four installments of $49.95 would allow one to make a seven course meal inside a single pot. I reminded Bruni I hadn't made a seven course meal in decades, if ever, and my kitchen decline began at age thirteen in a rectory not far from where we were now waiting to hear from child #1 or child #3 as to their safety and whereabouts while I stayed up well past my usual bedtime to man the MamaBear Worry Station.  I finished the subject of 'no pot purchase' strong with one word-- w.a.t.e.r.m.e.l.o.n, and shut the Julia Child wannabe down hard as I flipped through the channels to find the free movie bonanza station.  I had a sense I'd be pulling an all-nighter.

I can't be clear on the time, but it was well past "Nothing good happens after midnight" when I heard a strange scratching sound emanating from the direction of room #823's bolted door. I cautiously approached in my Betty Boop PJ's as Pudgy, Betty's cartoon dog sniffed the lower end of the locked door.  It wouldn't be Pudgy's first sniff job of the night.  We were staying in a pretty posh hotel with interior only access, so I knew the scratching couldn't be coming from a tree branch. 

I peered through the peep-hole to the vision of my daughter's cock-eyed grin, this time sporting an abundance of red liquid that looked a lot like blood, smeared across her face and blonde hair. My heart sank as I let out an "Oh my God!!!" to Bruni's "Oh FUCK, FUCK, FUCK!!!!  I told you not to let her leave with people she didn't even know!!!"  Betty Boop began shaking atop unsteady legs as I fumbled through the multiple door locks, assuming my daughter had either fallen hard on her face in a drunken stupor, had been beaten up, or worse. I was also pretty sure Pudgy pissed on me in all the excitement.

As I flung the door open, I was met with my first whiff of the night. "Whiff" was stuck in her hair, across her face, and all over the front of her brand new $200 jacket of only a few hours.  It had become stinking obvious Ms. Drunkie had erupted like Mount Etna after puking in a few garbage cans along Printers Alley when the wedding revelers decided to call her night, and a cab. My daughter assured me the taxi driver had been paid--twice. Once for the meter run, and again for the, "Ooops, I just puked all over your backseat" cleaning fee.  Nashville Trashville phase 2 had arrived hard, fast, and carrying the Merlot red signature.

I pulled my unsteady daughter inside the room, then into the adjacent tiled bathroom to get her clear of the carpet.  I started the shower, and began carefully peeling off layers of her puke soaked clothing, shoes, and pride, trying to contain my own dry heaving as I evaded popping puke pellets from landing on me.  

I considered burning the pricey jacket, cocktail dress and shoes in the effigy of Cornelius Vanderbilt, because there weren't enough plastic bags to deter the stink from permeating the entire passenger cabin of our return flight, less than 16 hours away. We could flip Jet Blue to Jet Puke with her jacket alone. Bruni suggested I should have bought the Seal-a-Meal thrown in for free with the 7-course cooker, it would have come in handy about now--we could seal that crap up and shove it into oblivion from the toilet chute in the airplane bathroom. I reminded the smart-assed little bitch that would be considered littering, even at 30,000 feet.

So I did what most moms do in a crisis, I began cleaning her voluminous clothing in the tiny bathroom sink while lecturing my daughter over the steam building inside the bathroom--mine and the shower's.  It was necessary to raise my voice a few octaves at times to drown out her off-tone singing between the guttural HAAAUUUKKKK, HAAAUUUKKK puking sounds that occasionally emanated from behind the veil of a shower curtain. Even Betty Boop seemed disgusted with the scene. Pudgy thought he smelled meatballs in the mix.

Tiny bottles of complimentary shampoo became laundry detergent. Scrub, scrub, scrub, sniff, scrub, scrub, scrub, sniff, sniff, scrub, scrub, scrub, scrub, scrub...sniff, sniff, sniff, scrub, scrub, scrub, scrub.

I eventually ran out of shampoo, rigorous scrubbing muscles, and lecturing words as Ms. Drunkie began the obsessive dry heaving phase that would continue for hours and under bedsheets throughout the night.

It was about this time the hotel room phone began ringing. I couldn't imagine who the fooooook could be calling our room at this ungodly hour, during the Merlot crisis, and prayed my son hadn't found his own brand of trouble. Maybe the taxi driver was back demanding more money.  I couldn't blame him.  


I rounded the queen-size bed and picked up the receiver, somewhat breathless from all the scrubbing---


"Hello, is this ... (Name changed to protect the drunkie)?"

"No, she is unavailable at the moment, this is her mother.  Is there a problem?" (as I wondered if she did pay the taxi driver).

"This is the hotel concierge,and I'm so sorry to bother you at this late hour, but your daughter came through the lobby a few minutes ago, and dropped her VISA credit card as well as her license. Someone just turned both cards in to the front desk."

"Oh my God.  Is it okay if I come down and pick those up on her behalf?-- She is not presentable right now, and I don't expect she will be for a bit of time."  (as in perhaps, never).

"Absolutely, that will be fine. I will see you in a few minutes."

"Okay, thank you, I'll be right down."  

By now, MamaBear is fooooooking steamed, and Brunhilda insistent that we book a separate flight back to Phoenix. Let these losers fend for themselves. She was also convinced her nose hairs were permanently singed with the stink of puke, and might never recover.  

There wasn't enough Chanel #Anything to kill the stench that had permeated our Nashville nest.

I re-entered the bathroom, this time ever nearer to boiling point to inform Ms. Drunkie of her generous lobby air drop campaign; that it could have ended in financial disaster had they been picked up by the wrong person. I informed her I was going to the lobby to collect her fooooooking cards, and she was not to leave the bathroom until I got back.  I did not need to expand my cleaning services to the carpeted areas of our room, or the bedsheets.

I was already regretting washing my makeup off, and decided my Boop PJ's would mostly be covered by my heavy winter coat and hide the glaring fact I was wearing pajamas in a hotel lobby after midnight. Who does that?  My own personal standards had dropped considerably this weekend.

I further reasoned my heat-regulating sheepskin UGG's would complete my fashionista statement and quite frankly, Scarlett, I didn't give a damn. Besides, who would be in the lobby of a hotel at 1:00 fooooooking a.m.??? Brunhilda whispered I might want to reconsider and throw some jeans on---it was after all, Vanderbilt recruiting weekend.  Fooooook the Commodores and Cornelius Vanderbilt.  It didn't give a rip.  I ignored Bruni's suggestion, blaming it on exhaustion from all that scrub-a-dub-dubbing as I spritzed the four of us, Bruni, Betty, Pudge and me--grabbed the hotel key card and headed for the Otis elevator trifecta once again to the echos of HAAAUUUKKKK, HAAAUUUKKK guttural wretching as the door closed behind me. I considered it an appropriate send-off chorus, and wondered how my daughter's new torso tattoo was holding up under the brute force of intestinal revenge.

I rounded the corner just as elevator #3 opened its doors, as if awaiting my arrival. Karma lurked. I scanned it quickly for drunks or potential rapists, and found it empty. Perfect. I boarded, hit the LOBBY button and noted that the panel of numbers seemed especially shiny--and redder than I remembered them being.

(This would be a good time to share with my readers that I am fairly short at 5'2", and my Boop's were a little long, dragging in the back. This little tidbit will become an essential part of my 'vator ride in 3.2.1.)

As we started to descend, Bruni remarked she couldn't shake the smell of puke, even with the Chanel #5 spritzing. I had to agree. Maybe our nose hairs had been permanently altered with the assault. About the moment we flew passed the fifth floor, the stank grew more intense. I looked down to find myself, Boop and Pudge standing in a puddle of my daughter's calling card...more fooooooking PUKE and it was now being infused throughout the bottom hem of my PJ's, as well as the soles of my UGG's.

I was M.O.R.T.I.F.I.E.D.  A closer inspection of the control panel indicated my daughter must have projectile vomited across it while trying to focus on the pulsating #8, which now appeared to be sobbing with chunks for tears. I moved to the farthest point possible in an effort to halt the infusion process and prayed there would be no additional riders between the fifth and first floor. I was officially over piles of puke. I could hardly deal. If it weren't for the ID needed to board the plane, I would have called it a weekend and wept.

The doors opened upon landing and I exited stinky Otis to find the lobby abuzz with at least a hundred of these damn peppy Vandy-ite's. I also noticed a cop talking to the bartender just outside the elevator bank. I cringed. They were talking about the drunk chick that had passed through the lobby performing involuntary figure eight patterning circles.  I wondered what Dorothy Hamill was doing at this exact moment.  Bruni bet she wasn't cleaning up puke.

Everyone in the lobby was talking about the drunk chick and I owned the mama walk of shame as I made my way through the throngs of parents, kids and coaches--stinky jammies and all.  This time my one-woman-parade sported a side of stank.

I rolled up to the concierge desk with the distinct aroma of a rebel Glade plug-in minus the outlet; quietly leaned into the desk to the gentlemen whose name badge identified him as the caller, and introduced myself as Mary Wakeford; I was there to collect my daughter's credit card and license on her drunk ass behalf, per his phone call fourteen spritz of Chanel #5's ago.  Brunhilda was so pissed, she blurted, "We're with the drunk chick that just blew up your lobby... oh, and your elevator, by the way..."

Then the shot heard around the world...okay, around the lobby...

“Oh absolutely, Mrs. Wakeford, I just need to see your ID.”

“ID? I didn’t bring my ID-- you didn’t tell me on the phone I would need my ID – who else would be here recounting our phone conversation?  Oh, and by the way (leaning in closer and whispering), I apologize profusely, but my daughter vomited in your elevator—third one on the right.  I am so sorry; she had a little too much to drink at a wedding.  I am more than embarrassed and will pay for any clean up charges accordingly.”


Bruni screamed, “Back him up, we STINK!!!!” 


There I was, a grown woman in her Betty Boop PJ's, reduced to near exhaustion, infantile embarrassment, with no idea where kid #1 was at the moment. Had I been born a leopard, I might have eaten both my kids that night.

It was obvious clicking my UGG's three times while repeating the mantra, "There's no place like home, there's no place like home, There's no place like home" was not going to get me out of this fooooooking nightmare.



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