Weekend Weeview

Auntie C stopped for an overnight visit en route to a wedding not too far from us the following day. We were so happy to have her here in time for dinner and she was such a help with Caroline both over margaritas and at bedtime. We got some top secret details about her and Uncle Hokie's wedding plans (seriously - I'd love to tell you all about it - but I'd have to break your emailing fingers and/or sew your lips shut. Not her rule, mine. Don't you people want to be SURPRISED?!?!). We don't get tons of visitors down here, so we were so happy to have her and we are pretty sure Caroline was too.

Saturday we were up and out by 8:45 to head up to the beach. We hit some traffic and didn't arrive until about 12:15, but managed to thank Kiki and Papa profusely (thanks again by the way!!) before we jetted back out on the road bound for Boston. We met up with also baby free Jesse and Amy at their place before the four of us caught the T into Boston for the Sox/Yanks nightmare. You'd think that given an opportunity to be sans baby and toddler we would welcome a chance to talk about many other things happening in our life, but oh no. We spent the entire pre-game chatting about Sam and Caroline. Then Amy and I spent MOST of the game talking about Sam and Caroline. We took a collective break from the babytalk post game when we randomly ran into Tony and Booty at "WHO's" of all places. It was so nice to spend some real quality time with them, they are special people to us, and someday in the not so distant future we'd like to actually share a city again so we might have an opportunity to spend more days and nights like this.

We were considering staying over in the Boston area, but opted not to when we heard that our snuffly girl was having trouble getting to sleep and wasn't feeling all too well - though happily playing - at 10pm. So we headed back to the beach and when we arrived she was snoring quietly from her pack n play. Caroline's parents were wiped from an exciting "adult day out" and were fast asleep in no time. Our sick girl sadly had other plans. She woke up crying and coughing at an unknown hour and though she fell right back to sleep in my arms, woke up crying after each attempt to put her back into the pack n play. So with swollen eyes, I tucked her into bed between Steve and I and waited for her breathing to even so I could maneuver her back to her sleeping place and get back to sleep myself. Thankfully our little sickie slept in until nearly 7:30, which was definitely sleeping in for Steve and I as well.

Knowing our poor girl was under the weather, we needed an all family non-nap assault to ensure that we might spend at least part of the ride with a slumbering cherub. A mom can only spend so much time turned around trying to convince her toddler that she really does want to play with that same toy again. We rolled away from the beach at 11:45 after many thank yous to Kiki, Papa, and Auntie k. A call into 511 revealed a tractor trailer accident on 395 in Webster, just next door to 84 - our planned route home. THEN Auntie C, en route back from her wedding phoned in a traffic report from the Merritt. A tree had fallen completely across the southbound side of the Merritt, falling onto a car, and traffic was piling up fast. She estimated it would be hours before things would be cleaned up. So Steve and I hastily chose to take 95 South the entire way home, a decision we deeply regretted but today, I don't think any option would have been particularly awesome. We had two near misses in Rhode Island - a pick-up cut in front of us moving from the fast to the middle lane, nearly clipping our front end - and a mini van merged onto the highway and into our lane without even a glance over his shoulder. Steve laid on the horn hard in both cases and I had fun waving goodbye to the mini van when he exited a few exits up. I won't share with you what his lovely gesture was back to me. I wish it was was simple as the bird. I love doing that. He knew we were so angry at him and I just smiled and waved enthusiastically. It makes me laugh everytime I do it.

We hit major traffic at the Rhode Island/CT border. A major lightening and thunder storm with whipping winds moved overhead and while it was slow going, we got through the storm but the traffic lingered. It lingered past the 395 merge and finally opened up a bit at exit 70, only to show up again and again in pockets the rest of the way to McCashew town. As we crept ever closer to home we did a little high five; we had gotten through it - we were almost there. Suddenly the smell of burning rubber, a terrible noise from behind and we were pulled over with a blown out rear tire. I guess we were a bit preemptive with that high five. We thankfully managed to safely move off the highway - an exit was just 1/2 a mile ahead and it was one we were familiar with. We pulled into a parking lot and examined the tire. It looked easy enough, something we could probably take care of in just 15 mintutes, but once Steve got the car jacked up those hub cap nuts would not buldge. So we called AAA - thanks again to Kiki and Steve for that gem! Our guy arrived about 45 minutes later at the tail end of another amazing rain storm. He struggled to remove the nuts from the tire and said that he didn't think we could have done it with our Honda issued tire iron. We drove back roads home, thanked God that we were all safe considering the tire blow out could not only have happened far far away, but also could have caused us to lose control of the car. Caroline was a trooper putting up with all this while her nose dripped constantly. We all kissed the threshold at just after 5pm when we were finally home safe and sound.

I try not to be superstitious, but those two near misses earlier in our ride had me on my toes. I was searching for that third thing so I could feel like we had gotten the rule of threes out of the way, but that was not to be.

I get to walk into a tire place tomorrow with Caroline and watch them wring their hands in excitement that a lady has arrived for them to try to pull one over. Too bad for them I have all the info I need and the lingo to match. Oh, I will be asking them about valves and balance and warranties. They won't know what hit them.

Just one more low point to share. I lost both my cool and some expletives at an area mall "family lounge." It was near where we had pulled off and I raced over to use the facilities, toting Caroline with me to get her out of the car. The storm was moving in and I only had time to grab my purse and a diaper, not her shoes. We found "the lounge," a finely appointed mommy mecca with changing "basins," baby wipes, a lounge area to gather, a bank of changing rooms, and a generous restroom with both child and adult toilets. I had been in there just once before. We found the door to the restroom shut and knocked lightly, listening for a voice within. A woman behind me asked if anyone was in there as she pushed passed me to knock on it herself. No one answered and she opened the door, calling for her whining 4 year-oldish daughter across the room to follow her. My mouth opened to protest, but she was already closing the door on my face. I tried to make the best of it, changing Caroline first, while crossing my legs in an attempt to ward off the overwhelming gottta go gotta go gotta go go go feeling. She emerged full minutes later with her daughter's shorts and underwear in her hand calling for her husband to come over. As he rolled their stroller into the room I finally spoke up and said, "how long are you planning on being in there" as in HI, lady you cut with a BABY not a four year old here, can you help me out ??! Weren't you EVER a mother to a baby? Her reply was "when we're done." I lost it. I don't regret saying what I said, but I do regret that there were a couple kids standing in the ever growing line behind me. I had some choice words for a family who clearly needed a changing room post accident (of which there were plenty) and not a restroom. She told me I had a filthy mouth and I told her she was thoughtless and classless. I wish I had been able to express my distress without the choice vocab, but seriously - it was pouring out, I had no umbrella, I was about to wet myself, my child had no shoes, and I had been not only cut in line but then dismissed. I had enough. I ended up having to go to the regular restroom and apply much "strategery" to keep Caroline's hands and feet from touching anything while I let go of the longest piddle of my adult life. Those people waiting for that restroom, they were all still there when I walked by again. I think I smelled some more choice words in the air.


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