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Yeah, we don’t actually make plans us lot. Well, maybe The Mom does, but the rest of us have fairly sketchy group conversations on Facebook. We’ve never been much for organisation, preferring a more organic approach to making plans. That and we’re used to operating with mobile phones and a generous data plan so we just text each other when we get to a place that looks fun and demand company.

The Mom, though, she really likes a plan. Needs one in fact. Can’t quite cope without one. And she’ll tell you this is so she can prepare, and I get that when you need to get an 18lb turkey into your car and home into your oven, you’re going to have to do some forward thinking. But what I find particularly hilarious is that she thinks the three of us, her offspring who she knows (individually and collectively) cannot get our shit together for love nor money, are somehow making something in a viable plan.

At the risk of giving away all our secrets, I provide below a sample of a typical conversation.

I’ll message my siblings and their associated partners.

Yo. Flight booked. Home in a month. Can I get a pick up?

L’il Sis might reply with: Maybe. Oh, and we should take the dog to the beach. Come to town!

Me: Okay! And we should get a picnic together, and then also go to that burger place in the Beach and then maybe ice cream?

Her fiancé: Island! Def into that.

Me: Totes!

Crazy D: Am working until next week. What day?

Me: Dunno.

L’il Sis: Don’t know work schedule yet.

Me: Let’s dress up like flamingos for the pool talent show!

Crazy D: on a scale from one to Mt Everest, how high are you right now?

Me: Sober as a judge!

Crazy D will just put an emoji here that denotes despair and a begrudging respect.

This sort of thing will go on, in a rambling tangentially sort of way, and there will be no actual dates mentioned. Nobody will know when anybody is at work, what the train schedules are, who’s sleeping where, who’s coming out to The Mom’s, and what we might do or want to eat when we get there.

But when she asks if we’ve got any plans we’ll totally say we have. At which point she’ll ask for details and be given a vague rundown of the conversation, which will flummox her completely.

“But you haven’t agreed a date or time to do any of this!” She’ll shout.

“”Pfft,” I’ll say. “Sort it when everyone’s here.”

“Which is when, exactly, dear?” The Mom will demand, her voice getting higher pitched with each passing second.

“Pfft,” I’ll say. “Dunno.”

“So you don’t know when anybody’s coming, what time, what food, or what they want to do? I expect you won’t know how long anybody’s staying for as well?”

“Yep, that’s about it.”

“But you said you had a plan?”

“We do,” I’ll say. “They’re going to come out here at some point, and then we’ll do stuff.”

“That’s the great plan you people have been working on?” The Mom will ask, going paler and paler.

“Yup,” I’ll say proudly.

At this point The Mom will grab hold of something sturdy, the counter say, or a chair. She will narrow her eyes at you and you’ll get this weird feeing that she’s putting the curse of a thousand camel fleas on you. She’ll shake over to the fridge and pour herself a glass of wine.

“Have you at least reminded your brother that Christmas is Sunday?” She’ll ask.

At which point, I’ll open the laptop and start typing furiously.