This year, Jesse is going with my mom and my niece. That should be interesting. My niece just graduated from UT and deserves a fun trip, and I’m sure they will have a blast. Nina is like Jesse in some ways, and I think they will travel well together. But I have been concerned about Mom – the clotheshorse. My mom dresses like a million dollars. She is very stylish with all her matching outfits and jewelry and shoes. Nina and Jesse…not so stylish. With Jesse’s "I have my money and my underwear; what more do I need" attitude, things could be tough on Grandma and all her clothes. I’m not saying that Jesse can’t shop with the best of ‘em, but she is pretty practical and tight with her money. She wants to choose clothes that that go with everything else, be fairly stylish by European standards, and not stick out like an American tourist. Jesse bought a new lightweight jacket that is warm enough and waterproof. It is not exactly stylish, but is a basic dark color that will go with everything. Jesse said that Grandma has a jacket to match every outfit, but they are working to pare that down. I think Jesse encouraged her to pack lightly – maybe choose one good jacket, get a good pair of walking shoes, etc.
Last year when Mom went to Australia with her friends, she was told that she could take two 50-lb. suitcases without being charged. When she showed me all that she was taking, I teased her about causing me to hyperventilate. I explained to her that I had taken trips to Europe and Canada for a month’s stay with only one suitcase, and it did not weigh 50-lbs. She and her friends still packed two suitcases each. Her Aussie friends picked them up at the airport pulling a small trailer to get their luggage.
So when Mom called Jesse the other day to say that she was at the shoe store and wanted to buy Nina some boots that were similar to Jesse’s, I started laughing. There were the usual questions like, "Do you think I should buy her gray boots or black? Do you mind if Nina has boots just like yours?" Of course Jesse is very practical – she knows that Nina wears the same size shoe as she does and they can share. But she did want to know what color gray – dark or light – some things are very important. Nina was called and consulted. She, too, wanted to know about the gray. Lots of phone calls were made while they discussed boots, and I laughed. Nina and Jesse are both very easy going. I think they will have quite the adventure with Grandma. I know Grandma is in for the time of her life. Look out, Catherine, they are coming your way.