Ben and I got up early and hurried downstairs, to wait around with nearly everyone while Seth made us late. So my dad was late to his final military promotion. Ironic, I suppose. No one made a big deal out of it though.
I was filled with pride for my dad when his boss listed his accomplishments and bestowed on him his new rank, and proud of him when he made his acceptance speech. (He didn't get tedious or repeat himself too much, which I was afraid of) It was a fairly simple ceremony.
Afterwards, we went to the game room of the hotel and played around (Ben trounced everybody at ping-pong), then went to lunch. Once again I was weirded out by how much of a cynosure I am in that family… My mom and Seth and Bethany vied for my attention. It was pleasant enough. My dad sat at the other end of the table and talked mostly with Cort (his pastor who came to the promotion also).
My dad was very impressed that we made the long drive up, and he wasn't the only one. I saw respect in the eyes of some of the men he introduced us to, and was pleased to think that our willingness to go far, far out of our way was duly noted.
I got naked in the car on the way back and Ben and I traded. (He managed to not swerve too much.) There is just something so sexual about driving. To me, anyway.
My favorite thing about the whole trip was this: when they were setting up a family picture right after my dad's promotion, Ben asked if they wanted him in the photo, and my dad responded, "Of course, you are family now." That is the way I think it should be. Certain other people take family pictures with only blood kin, and makes me furious. Don't call someone your "other daughter" unless you mean it, dammit! And if you meant it you would treat her like real family, not like an unwanted stepchild. That is my titanium opinion.