“The Joys of Planning a Family Vacation,” by Gen Marshall

Nov 13th, 2019 | By | Category: Fake Nonfiction, Prose

To: The Jacobs/LaFontaine clan

Subject: Family vacation

Hi everyone!

As discussed on our WhatsApp thread between cousins, we would like to organize a short get-together for our extended family! So consider this an official start to our planning! I’ve included all 17 of us in this email thread, so just keep that in mind if you reply all. Let’s start with something pretty basic: picking a date. Now, Mark and I would love for this to coincide with the celebrations for our dad’s 75th birthday. I know there are a lot of you, but it’s nine months away so I really think we can make this happen. We could even make this an annual tradition! Please let me know which of these three weekends suits you best: August 3, August 10, August 17. We’ll go from there!

Thanks everyone!


To: The Jacobs/LaFontaine clan

Re: Family vacation

Hello everyone!

Thank you to everyone who replied to my email in a timely manner.

To answer some concerns a few of you raised:

We haven’t picked a location yet. One idea we floated between cousins was to rent cabins at the mountain resort and spa located a few hours from where my parents live. I know some of you would have to fly in, so I remain open to any other suggestions as well!

Tyler, while I appreciate you wanting to celebrate your mom’s 2nd wedding anniversary to her third husband, the idea is to pick a weekend in the summer when we can get together. I think it would be tricky to plan something in the middle of January and have to work around the school calendar for the youngest members of our family. Having said that, I’d be happy to help you organize something else for the occasion, let me know!

So back to my original question: which of these three weekends suits you best: August 3, August 10, August 17.

Let’s make this happen!


To: The Jacobs/LaFontaine clan

Re: Re: Family vacation


Like I mentioned before, this is only about picking a date that works for everyone. Then we can all make our own reservations at the location we will eventually agree upon by whatever means suits each of us. Uncle Frank, I know you don’t want to reserve online because of the “scams”, so I’m sure any resort or hotel we pick would be happy to walk you through the booking process by phone. I don’t have a fax, so I’m not sure what you were trying to send me.

Aunt Pat, I’d rather not get involved in your on-again, off-again argument about what happened to Grandma’s porcelain bulldog collection. If you want to contact Dad about this issue, please email or call him directly. And I can assure you that I haven’t seen any canine figurines lying around.

There are still many, many of you who haven’t let me know which date in August, if any, works for you.

Let me know, there are only 8 months left to plan!


To: The Jacobs/LaFontaine clan

Re: Re: Re: Family vacation


I’m still waiting on most of you to tell me when in August you could make it to our family gathering. It would be so nice to see all of you there!

Patrick and Jen, I’m not sure what you mean by “CrossFit-friendly” facilities, but I’m sure any place we pick would have some sort of gym equipment. If one of us brings a spare tire you can lug around for an hour, would that help?

Like I mentioned several times before, we’re just figuring out the dates. We’ll get to the location next.



To: The Jacobs/LaFontaine clan

Re: Re: Re: Re: Family vacation


Regarding the myriad dietary requests you’ve all sent me, I don’t know if the resort we end up at will have soy-based beverages or imported espresso or gluten-free beer or non-GMO flatbreads or plant-based cookie options. I think that’s something you’re going to have to check on your own. I’m sure wherever we end up will be happy to accommodate your dietary specifications.

Before we get to that, let’s all pick a date! So, will I be seeing you all on the weekend of August 3, 10, or 17?


To: The Jacobs/LaFontaine clan

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Family vacation

Guys, you have to help me out here.

I know we can make this happen! The weekend of August 3, 10, or 17?


To: The Jacobs/LaFontaine clan

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Family vacation

I was just informed that Dad would rather spend his 75th birthday in Orlando alone with Mom.

See you all on WhatsApp.


Gen Marshall is a freelance translator and copywriter who lives in Montreal, Quebec.

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