My sister made covert plans to visit our mother for Christmas. My mother lives about three hours by road north of me. Mom is seventy-six. I think her older sister is eighty. She lives in Edmonton. Her sister lived on a farm for years a little bit north of where my mother lives. She moved off the farm and it was passed down to her son, my cousin who I will refer to as Dave. My aunt's first husband died of a heart attack years ago while working on the farm.
Dave was having a family Christmas get together at his place with his family, his sister and her family, and his mother (my mother's sister) was going to be there. Dave is a couple of years older than me. I had not seen him in about five to ten years.
The plan that my sister made, then sprung on me later, was that she and I would go pay mom a surprise visit on December 24, stay overnight, and take her to see her sister at Dave's place. Mom talks to her sister on the phone just about every day. They do not get to see each other in person that often.
There was only one thing I wanted out of all of this. I wanted turkey. I had made plans to ensure that I was going to get turkey. In fact I guaranteed that I would get turkey. Earlier in December I ordered a turkey from a local caterer and I picked it up fully cooked on December 23. I brought it to my sister's home and my sister, her husband, and her son and I had an early Christmas dinner. The plan from there was that my sister would join me to go north to see mom the next day and her husband and son would visit his family on Christmas Day.
It is a given that I would get shafted somewhere. My sister hurt her back leaving me to go see mom. On the morning of the 24th I had turkey for breakfast, threw my travel bag in the car, and headed north. Snow covered roads, icy sections, bitter cold, and four hours later I arrived and surprised mom. She asked what I was doing there as she obviously was not expecting me. I told her I was visiting for Christmas and that I was taking her to visit her sister on Christmas Day.
Mom told me she was not going. I smiled the kind of smile that you would see on a Bond villian and politely stated that I did not drive close to four hours in temperatures flirting with -30C and having this prearranged for her not to go. I advised her that she would be going if I had to pick her up and stuff her in the car. This would be relatively easy to accomplish since is a not much over one hundred pounds and about five feet two inches in height.
Mom went willingly. She also had a good time, as did I catching up with family, and she thanked me for taking her. Alas there was no turkey at the cousin's place when I was there. The invite was for a Christmas breakfast. When I was taking mom back home, where there was no turkey, she wanted me to take her car out, fill it with gas, and return it. Nevermind this was on Christmas Day. Surprisingly there were four gas station open in a town of eight thousand people. Of course they seriously jacked up the price of gas. I filled it and paid it and put mom's car back. I got back on Boxing Day where I managed to get more turkey.
The moral of the story is that if you want turkey plan ahead.