This weekend we went to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, to celebrate my sister's graduation from college. I knew it would be a good trip when the man in front of us in the security line at LaGuardia was Don King. He traveled with a posse of about four other men, one of whom forgot a duffel bag on the far side of the metal detectors after he himself had passed through. Had I been Don King, I would have fired that man immediately.
Apparently Don King is more charitable than me, because after we made it through, he sauntered into the terminal, grinning broadly and holding a small American flag in one hand and an unlit cigar in the other. "Hey, everybody, it's me, Don King, and I hope you're having a great time tonight here in Terminal B," was the message he was sending.
Myrtle Beach once again delighted us with its flat expanses of freeway, seasonally brown grass, and strip clubs galore: The Penthouse Club, The Bunny Ranch, Bottoms Up, Derriere's, the venerable Crazy Horse, and the grossly and opaquely named Inserection. We spent the bulk of our time moving my sister from her old undergraduate apartment to her new apartment in a new town-square development that had L and I drooling with envy. Kelsey now lives above an Ann Taylor, with a movie theater, Barnes & Noble, and Starbucks a block away. She can actually walk to her grocery store, Piggly Wiggly. It's just like how we live in the Village, except in the Village the buildings are taller, and in Myrtle Beach, people all go to church on Sundays before they head to The Bunny Ranch.
Saturday morning's graduation ceremony was very interesting. By "interesting" I mean "vaguely unconstitutional," since we opened and closed with a prayer, which you don't often find at public school events. But since we were in South Carolina I wasn't going to say anything. L did not share my polite demurral, however, when one speaker told the graduates that they should thank their "fathers and grandfathers" for all of their help and support over the years, and then instructed the "fathers and grandfathers" to stand for a round of applause. L went apopletic, spluttering that this was ridiculous and imploring my mom to stand up too. Hooray for fathers and grandfathers!
It was that kind of weekend. We had a very nice time with the whole family, and enjoyed a bunch of delicious South Carolina meals (and one rotten one). The usual sadness of saying goodbye was tempered by the fact that we'll see everyone in a week and a half for Christmas. The important thing, though, is that my sis graduated from college and that we were all there to celebrate it and let her know how proud we all are. And the fact that she's making her home in the kind of classy town where the government insists that Derriere's is the only full-nudity establishment within city limits -- well, that's all the better.