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Regretting My Vacation
The time I regret was actually going on an amazing vacation to Florida. It all started two weeks into June of this year. My family and I lived in Lakewood in a duplex blue house. School just finished and summer was just around the corner. My family and I really don’t have vacations over summer break, we just never really wanted to go anywhere, but this year was going to be different. We had lots of fun vacations in the past, like going to Atlantic City, to see the beach, and to Niagara Falls, it was so beautiful, I loved washing the water fall, I could just feel the breeze running through my face and hair. I just wanted to have an amazing vacation, but still was not sure where we should all go. I had so many ideas, but still no clue.
It was Sunday night when my father asked, “Huda, can you please start the laundry?”
“I can’t we don’t have laundry detergent,” I said.
“Oh, right. Well let’s go to Wal-Mart and get some cleaning supplies,” he said.
Everyone in the house was rushing to get dressed. Luckily I was already dressed. So while everyone was upstairs in their rooms, I decided to feed the kittens. We had four kittens at the time, three girls, and just one boy. One of the girls, Ginger, was the color of ginger and had black, and also white. The other two girls were twins, they looked the same, but we could still tell them apart. Their names were Chu-Chu and Pooki. They were both mixed with all kinds of colors and stripes. They both had orange and white stripes, black and gray stripes, and had lots of white. The boy was named Cat Daddy, he was all black and gray striped. We loved them all so much.
“Okay little kittens time to eat,” I said.
When I shook the bag full of the kitten food, they all came running to the kitchen, that had the scent of cleanness and Pine Sol. Shaking the bag is a way the kittens knew it was time to refill their bowls. Once their bowls were filled, you could just hear them all purr.
“Ready?” my dad asked as he entered the kitchen ready to go.
“Yup,” I say and we all head out the door.
We arrive at Wal-Mart. I looked at the time and it was past midnight and the parking lot was filled with so many cars. I have never seen so many cars in my life. We enter Wal-Mart and my dad gathers the items pretty quickly. He also grabbed extra cleaning supplies, which meant more cleaning for me. So we are all standing in the cashier line just waiting till it’s our turn.
“Baba,” I say, “Can we go on a summer vacation?”
“Where do you want to go?”
“I don’t know, anywhere.”
“How about Niagara Falls?” he asks.
“Nah, we been there so many time,” my brother, Hamdi says. Hamdi was 8 years and in the 3rd grade at the time.
“Hey, how about we go to Florida? We’ve never been to Florida,” I say.
“Yeah,” my siblings say.
“Okay, I guess we can go to Florida. But when and how about the cats?” my dad says.
“How about now, when we get home? We can leave the cats a lot of food in big bowls and leave extra water,” I suggest.
“Okay, sounds fair,” my dad says, “but we have to leave a lot of food and water out for the cats.”
“Yes,” we all shout.
We finally get home and it’s darker than ever outside. I check the time and its past 2 in the morning. I turn on all the light in the living room and dining room. I head to the kitchen where the kittens come running up from the basement. I put all the cleaning supplies in the cabinet under the kitchen sink and I walk back into the living room where my dad’s on the computer.
“I’m going to start packing for everyone,” I say.
“Alright, but I don’t think we will be leaving tonight,” my dad says, “it’s too late and all the kids are tired.”
“Perfect, so they can all sleep part of the way there so you can concentrate on driving,” I say.
“You really want to go don’t you?” he asked.
“Yes, yes I do.”
I run up the stairs and head into my room. I get on my knees and pull out the pink suitcase from under my bed. I unzip it and open my closet. I start taking out some clothes and wonder what I should take and what not. My sister walks in so excited, jumping, and screaming of excitement while I was trying to zip the suitcase back up that is now filled with about a weeks’ worth of clothes.
“Do you need help zipping it up?” my sister, Amera asks. Amera was 12 years and in the 6th grade.
“Yes please. Do you have your suitcase ready?” I ask
“Yeah,” she replies.
I head into my brothers room and it was a disaster. There were clothes everywhere. I see my brother with this huge suitcase filling it up with clothes that they weren’t even folding neatly. I didn’t bother them, I let them be, and I was just in a rush to go. I run down stairs and see my dad’s still in the computer, so I run back upstairs and go to his room. I pull out his black suit case from his closet and open his draws. I start to look for clothes that my dad won’t mind wearing and would want to pack. I fill his suitcase with lots of clothes and socks. When I finish packing, I run to all the rooms and tell all my siblings to get their suitcases and meet downstairs to get ready to go. I grab my dad’s suitcase; go to my room to grab mine and head downstairs. I walk into the kitchen, take out a huge bowl, and fill it with cat food. Then I take out another huge bowl and fill it with lots of water. I set both the bowls against the wall, where the other cat bowls are. I then take out some juice boxes, some bread, peanut butter, cookies, and bags of chips. I put them all in a plastic bag for the road, just in case we get hungry on the way. I walk into the living room and everyone is downstairs with their suitcases ready to go.
“We are all ready to go,” I say to my dad.
“Wow that was fast,” he says, “You guys head out to the car and I’ll be right behind you.”
We head out to the car. My dad’s car is a green Kia. My brother, Mahdi, who was 10 years and in the 4th grade, unlocks the car with the keys. My dad is inside closing and locking all the windows and also closing all the lights. He locks the front door and enters the car. We all get comfortable and my dad starts driving. Its 4 in the morning and the roads are clear. My siblings are in the back seat covered with blankets and are all fallen asleep. I lay by seat back a little a look out the window. My dad stops by Speed Way gas station. He fills the gas tanks and buts himself a drink.
It was Monday afternoon when I get up and realized we are long gone from Lakewood, Ohio. We stopped at a Rest Stop and all got down to use the bathroom and freshen up. We sat at a table with a playground with a slide and swings behind us. I take out the bread, peanut butter, and juice boxes. I make sandwiches while my dad goes in the store and buys a map. We all eat and play, and then soon we back on the road.
A day and a half passed until we got down to Orlando, Florida. It was beautiful. It was about 8 PM when we got there. We drove around a little and saw carnivals and rides and so many lights of beautiful colors. We stop by a hotel and get a room. We get settled in and freshen up again.
“Baba, can we drive around?” I ask
“Yeah. Sure. why not? Let’s go drive around you guys before we go to sleep,” my dad says.
We head back to the car and drive around for about an hour. Orlando was beautiful. It was hot too. There were lots of people out walking around and also driving. I start to take pictures with the camera we bought on our way there. I take pictures of us, the rides, and the lights. The lights really got my attention. They were so bright and amazing. There were so many colors like a rainbow. It was around 9 when we started heading back to the hotel. We walked into the room and it felt so cool. My dad had turned the air conditioner on before we left and thank goodness for that, it had been so hot. There were two bedrooms, a living room with couches and a television, a kitchen, and a bathroom in the hotel. It was like an apartment.
The next morning we all get up, take our showers, brush our teeth and head out the door to get some breakfast. We when to a place called Waffle House, where we had waffles and eggs with a glass of orange juice. It was delicious. Later on we drove back to the hotel and we all sat in the living room watching SpongeBob while my dad was giving a call to his brother. My dad’s brother or my uncle lives in Florida, but not in Orlando. He lives all the way down in Miami with his wife and three kids. He has two boys and a girl and they are all still very young. I could hear my dad on the phone.
“We are down in Florida,” he says, “We having lots of fun, the kids love it here.”
After a while my dad hangs up the phone and tells us to grab all our things because we are heading down to Miami to see my uncle. We gather up all our things and put them in the car and we all jump in and start driving. I’ve seen so many beautiful things down there in Florida. There were so many trees and people and it was still very hot. We drive for about 8 hours till we hit Miami. By then it was late at night and the stars were shining bright. My dad asks me to call up my uncle for directions to his house.
“Hey, Uncle Ayoub, it’s Huda,” I say, “We are in Miami.”
“Great, let me give your dad directions to my house,” he says and I hand the phone to my dad.
“Hello,” my dad says, “Okay I know where that is, I will see you in a little bit.”
My dad hangs up the phone and gives back my cell that starts flashing Battery Dead. I turn it off and put it in my bag.
“Do you know how to get there?” I ask.
“Yeah, I think so,” he replies.
“Great, can’t wait till we get there. I haven’t seen him in so many years,” I say.
“I know. It has been a while.”
My dad drives until he reaches a house that was red and tannish. It had gates around it and had two cars parked in the drive way. Luckily there was still enough room in the drive way for my dad to park his car. He pulls up in the drive way and hunks his car a few time. Out comes running my uncle so happy and excited, right behind him are his two boys, cute as ever in their matching outfits. They had red shirts with Winnie the Pooh on the front and Blue jeans, and sneakers. We all get out the car all smiling and excited too. My dad and his brother hug. I walk over to his and he kisses my cheek and hugs me, then does the same to my brothers and sister. We head inside and he has an amazing place, it was huge. There were 4 rooms, kitchen, living and dining room, and two bathrooms. We stay awhile and my dad talks with my uncle and his wife. It was till about 2 in the morning when my dad said we should go and get a hotel because the boys were getting tired.
“No, no that’s okay; you guys should stay and spend the night here. We have an extra room with two beds,” my uncle says.
“Really, is that okay with you guys,” my dad asks.
“Yes, of course. It always is,” my uncle replies.
He shows us the way to the bedroom while my aunt is putting her boys to sleep and putting the baby girl in her crib. In the room there were to beds and they were real big. My sister and I took one and my brothers took the other. My dad insisted on sleeping on the couch.
The next couple of days my uncle showed us around Miami. He took us to so many places. They were incredible. We went to so many different malls and bought so many new clothes. We went to the beach, the sand was hot, the air was cool, and the water was great, and salty. I took so many pictures. It was one of the greatest vacations I have ever taken.
Soon we realized we had to get back home to the kittens. So we went back to my uncle’s house, gathered up all our things, said our good byes, and were on our way back to Lakewood, Ohio.
We have been out of Ohio for 7 days. We had an incredible adventure down in Florida and we have so many memories. We have missed our friends and most of all our kittens, so we wanted to get home fast.
When we finally got to Lakewood, it was about 12 in the afternoon. The first thing we did before we got home was going to the store and buying our kittens a treat. We bought 4 cans of cat tuna. Our kittens loved tuna. We were so excited in seeing them again after a whole week. My dad drives up in the drive way of our house and we all run out like crazy leaving our package behind. We rush to the door waiting for my dad to open the door to run to our kittens. He opens the door and we all zoom in a flash. We turn on all the lights and start looking for the kittens.
“Kitties, Kitties. Where are you guys?” we all say.
“That’s weird we can’t find them anywhere,” I say.
We all look under all the beds, in the closets, under and behind the couches, in the bathrooms, behind the refrigerator, in the basement, and THEY ARE NO WHERE TO BE FOUND. We are all officially freaking out.
“We can they possibly be?” Mahdi says.
“Maybe they are hiding, let’s wait a little and see it the come out,” my dad says.
So we wait. And wait. And wait. And nothing. Nothing at all. We have been waiting for an hour and still no sign of them anywhere. They are nowhere to be found. They are gone. But how? My brothers and sister and I go next door to our neighbors who are really mean, but we don’t know why. We know on the door. The mother opens the door.
“Can I help you?” she says with a very nasty attitude.
“Well, we were wondering if you have seen our kittens anywhere. They are missing and we can’t find them,” I say.
She laughs really hard and looks at us, and then she just shuts the door in all of our faces.
“Well that was rude,” we all say at the same time.
My dad is still in the house looking but still no luck. I look on our back porch which is very small. I open the back door and realize that one of the windows is open. I rush out to the back to see if there is any sign of them, but all I see is the neighbors next door all just laughing. I get really mad. I run back inside.
“Baba, baba. The back window is cracked open,” I say to my dad.
“No that’s impossible I made sure I closed all the windows and locked them all before we left,” he says.
I start thinking to myself, what if the neighbors’ took them? What if they broke into the house and took them all? These questions can’t get out of my mind. My siblings and I go out to the front porch and sit on the couch crying. Our other next door neighbor walks by and notices we are crying. She walked towards us with her daughter and asked us what was wrong.
“Our cats are missing,” I say.
“I think I know what happened to them,” the woman replies.
“What,” we all say.
“Well, about two days after you left somehow your kittens got loose and were running around, but only in the back and front, and they stayed here on your porch. They were just fine they were outside for about 2 days on their one, but I took care of them, I brought them water and food, and also made sure they stayed around your home. But then 2 days ago I seen your neighbors sitting on you porch playing with you kittens. I didn’t say anything, but I watched them, then the mother came out of the house yelling on the phone and she was yelling about the kittens. She was saying they are running around all over the place and they were driving her crazy, that you guys were nowhere to be found and she was going to call an animal shelter. I think she was talking to the land lord because then he came about an hour later and talked to her about the kittens. She said she wanted them gone. The land lord (His name was bill, by the way) told her that he can’t help her with that. I’ve seen her start yelling. She said she was calling someone to get rid of them. About another hour later a man came with a truck. My daughter and I stayed on our porch and watched. The man had a garbage bag in his hands and walked to the backyard. We don’t know what he did in the backyard, but he came back with the bag full. He just threw that back at the back of his truck and drove away. Then the mother became satisfied and didn’t complain anymore. After that day we haven’t seen your kittens at all,” the woman said.
“Oh my god, she got rid of them. I can’t believe. I HATE HER,” I say with anger.
My dad heard the story and he called the landlord.
“Bill,” my dad says, “Where are my kittens? What happened to them? What did you tell that woman she can get rid of them?”
Bill was speechless he was not saying a word. All he said was “I didn’t know what to tell her.”
My dad was furious.
“So you just let them get rid of my cats,” my dad says very furiously.
The neighbors are out on the porch laughing an evil laugh.
The mother steps down the steps and says, “You should have taken better care of them.”
“That is it. I have had it with you and your racism. Ever since you moved in you have been very disrespectful to me and my kids, and I am done……………” my dad yells at her.
She just laughs.
My dad turns to Bill, “Are you going to do anything?” he says.
“What do you want me to do? This is none of my business,” Bill replies.
“None of your business, you gave her permission to get rid of my cats. And you didn’t even call me to let me know,” my dad says back.
“I did not know where you were,” Bill says.
“Yes, you do, I have called you and left you three messages telling you where I was and for how long,” my dad says angrily, “That’s it. You are a horrible landlord. I have had it. You are very cheap about you homes, you don’t fix what brakes in your rental house, and I want to move out.”
“Fine with me, I don’t care. It’s none of my business.”
The next couple of days were rough. We were all still upset about our kittens. We miss them very much. We were all still crying. My dad started looking for homes to rent. He was furious. He hated the neighbors and the land lord, he wanted out and he wanted it fast. My dad was right, the land lord was cheap, he didn’t care much about any damages of the house, he would always say it wasn’t his responsibility that he doesn’t live in the house, and we should take care of them blah, blah, and blah.
“We should of never have gone to Florida. It’s my entire fault that we did. I should have not of wanted to go on a vacation,” I say.
“It’s not your fault, you didn’t know that this would happen,” everyone in my family tells me.
The next couple of weeks were even harder. Every time we would see the neighbors’ they would look at us with faces. They would laugh at us in evil ways. They would also write mean things on my dad dirty car window. I have also had it living next door to them and the land lord. I was ready to leave and never come back. My brothers and sister were all still sad. They wouldn’t go out with their friends or anything. It was all too sad and tragic.
A couple months later my dad finally found a house for us to rent. The house was in North Royalton. So we started packing up all our belongings. We bought boxes and supplies to help us move out. About two weeks of packing, we were finally ready to get a moving truck and move out. My dad left my in charge of the house while he went to get the rental truck from U-Haul. While he was gone I kept going up and down the stairs to make sure we had everything. About 45 minutes later, he had come back with a huge truck. He parked it right outside the house on our front lawn. The first thing we moved into the truck was the couches, and then were the beds, and so on and so on. Soon we were all down loading everything into the truck.
I had never been to North Royalton, but my dad told me it was like a suburb area. So we drive away from the house and neighbors that I will now not miss and we head to our new home. About 45 minutes of driving, we finally arrive to our new house. It’s beautiful and it’s a single house. The neighbors aren’t too close to us at all, so we don’t have to deal with neighbors. There are great fields for us to play in. we have a great back yard, it’s huge, and a hug front yard. The outside of the house is white, with black roofing. My dad drives up the drive way and I can’t wait to see our home. There are 3 bedrooms, a kitchen, living room, basement, and bathroom, and best of all it is perfect.
One month passes by, and we are all comfortable in our new home. But we still miss our kittens. I will never forget what happened when we lost our kittens. I regret ever going to Florida.
My dad felt bad for us losing our kittens. They were still babies. We didn’t get the chance to see them grow up. But for our early Christmas present this year, my dad got us a new baby kitten. He is 9 weeks and 2 days. He is orange and white. We all love him. Hopefully, nothing will happen to our little guy and we get the chance to see him grow up with our family. And that’s my story about the time I regretted going on a vacation to Florida.