There is so much in this life that I have to be grateful for, that it would take me more than two days to list all of it. Now that Thanksgiving has passed, I want to focus on something humorous rather than the more serious topics of being grateful to have a job, home, food and family. I would like to take a moment to share precious memories of cousin Tracy and things she has done. She has not passed away or anything, mind you, she is just simply someone I am grateful to have in my life.
I have a very large family. Cousin Tracy is the eldest daughter of my Mom's twin brother. That however, does not indicate how large the family is, but that's ok. The focus is on cousin Tracy and the very curious situations she has gotten herself into. There are so many stories to tell about cousin Tracy, but today I think I will just share the ones that stick out in my mind the most.
I am going to take you back to the summer of 1979. I was sixteen years and Tracy was fifteen. In my hometown you could get a driver's permit when you were just fourteen. Since most of the family was in law enforcement or worked for the city, we didn't worry about a parent of someone with a valid drivers license riding shotgun. We would just get the keys to the car and go where ever we wanted, within reason of course. One particular summer night, we went on a hunt for a guy that Tracy had a crush on. Back in those days it was called “creeping.” I believe it was TLC's song that made the term even more popular years later.
We attempted to make our way to the house party the guy was supposedly at by taking the back roads. Tracy was driving and I was riding shotgun and a friend was in the back. Tracy's parents always gave her the car when she wanted it, mine were always reluctant. She sped from one side street to another barely slowing to stop at stop signs and honking her horn at those who got in her way or weren't traveling fast enough. I believe the term “road rage” was invented because of her. And as it goes with road rage, someone will always retaliate. Someone isn't going to like that you just honked at them or flipped them the bird.
We were forced to stop behind some dudes at a stop sign. They weren't moving. Tracy began to honk, still they didn't budge. She rolled down the window and began to yell. Still, they didn't budge. Tracy put the car in reverse and made an attempt to go around them, it felt as if we were going in slow motion. The dudes turned and looked at us and we looked at them. The were lighting a doobie at that corner and apparently they weren't budging until they were ready. Tracy flipped them off and turned the corner. We were back on track, heading towards the desired destination, until we saw the unusually bright lights in the rear view. The chase was on!
The dudes were chasing us, flashing their lights, honking and yelling obscenities from the windows. Holy crap! I suddenly became the side seat driver. “Go left, turn here, speed up!” I yelled. Tracy had become Steve McQueen. She was a driving fool, but we didn't shake them. We had to go faster, turn corners sharper and come up with a plan. We decided to go to my parents. Our driveway was along the side of the house and you couldn't see it from the street per say. We sped and got a little distance between us and them. Tracy zipped into the driveway and managed to stop before crashing into the garage. We tumbled out of the car and trotted into the house. My parents were home and looking at us with surprise. We simple told them we were stopping to use the restroom and we would be on our way.
We walked around the house looking out windows and listening for screeching tires. There were none. We won the chase. The rest of the night was uneventful after that. I think silently we are gave thanks the chase resulted in no one getting hurt. My heart still races today thinking back on that story.
Since then cousin Tracy has made us laugh over and over. Like the time we all went to a water park and she got stuck in the inner-tube and everyone around laughed because none of us had ever seen anything like it. Or the time she took one too many Dramamine before a flight which resulted in too much drool. We had many other memories from when we were young. But we have also had some fun memories of raising kids and the silly things they did and said. We hadn't shared the stories with our kids until recently. They had no idea how much fun and how reckless their old moms were back in the day. I am grateful cousin Tracy is in my life and that we still have the opportunity to make more fond memories to share with family and friends.