It took so long to leave because…
of my dad.
You have to plan carefully when visiting my dad’s house if you have somewhere else to go. Especially at holidays. If he says “We’re carving the turkey at 1:00,” what that really means is “I’m probably going to stick it in the fryer at 1:30. It’ll be done by 2:30, but has to sit and cool a while, so we’ll probably eat at 3:00.” His turkey is amazing and worth it, but my MIL usually starts her dinner promptly at 5:00, and it that leaves us at eating and running. (Leaving an hour after eating the meal is absolutely “running” to my family. You’ve gotta sit and chat a while and then have dessert and chat some more.)
Back when we’d meet at his house to go out to a restaurant on the weekend on occasion, he’d tell us, “Meet here at 6:00. I’ll be ready.” Nah. He was (and I assume still is, but we haven’t been over there since early March) always messy from working on something outside, in torn jeans, a white t-shirt that was no longer white and should’ve been tossed years ago, and dad sneakers. So our choices would be “wait 45 minutes for Dad to get ready” (which isn’t so bad if you don’t have hangry kids) or “let’s go somewhere Dad can go dressed like this.” Not that the last part really matters anyway.
That’s better than when I was a kid. When I was young, we’d have to wait for him to come up from the pasture, and back then he cared more about his appearance, so we’d wait for the shower, too. And sometimes if he knew we had to leave somewhere at a certain time, he’d disappear about 10 minutes beforehand saying he had something to do that would take five minutes. Five minutes would quickly turn into an hour.
I’m a stickler for being punctual, and my dad’s lack of being aware of time often drives me nuts. My husband is the same way. My son is also the same way, hence racking up a record number of tardies in elementary school. BG is usually good about doing what she needs to get out the door at a certain time, thankfully.
It also took so long to leave because of the goodbyes.
Basically this except, “One does not simply leave my father’s house.”
There’s no going, “Well, I’ve enjoyed the visit. Love you and talk to you later this week.” If you do that or hug everyone present any less than five times, then someone must be mad or sick. By the time you’ve said your goodbyes and given hugs multiple times, plus talked about the other random things that popped up, you’ve probably left 30-45 minutes later than planned.
I’ll tell you, I’ve had my problems with my dad over the years. Some major ones at times and some minor ones still. But I hope when my kids are adults that they say it took so long to leave because of good stuff like that. (That last paragraph, not the parts where leaving the house to go eat took forever lol.)