She's from Dallas, has straight Wednesday Addams style hair, tattoos, and a lip ring. In Vernon, she couldn't be more exotic if she were a mermaid. I have been sharpening sticks to keep the local metal heads away, but it's no use. She now has all of them wrapped around her finger (and she is casually merciless about her Queen Bee status, to boot). All of the local boys turn into fatheads whenever she's around. As soon as she leaves their air space, they start punching each other on the arm and calling each other "fag" and "queer." It's very Napoleon Dynamite-ish.
I am proud of how she's matured over the last few years. Cathy is very close to her and also very protective, so it's been nice having, for all intents and purposes, a grown-up teenager in the house. Weird, too, because we don't have a disciplinary kind of relationship with her. We're the "cool" aunt and uncle because we don't come down on her when she gets new ink. She wants to eventually travel and live in Seattle, because of the coffee. We're trying to dole out the life skills one at a time, so as not to overwhelm her. I never thought I'd feel this way, but it's a lot of fun having her around.
Do you ever look at your life and shake your head and go, "Wow, I would never have guessed that I'd be HERE at this particular time in my life?"