A valley, two vines, and a flower

A place for a mom to rant and rave.

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Ponder this:

What are fingernails that shine like justice?

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Bloody nose, field sobriety, prayer, and a filling: A busy day in the life of a mom

Today was one of those busy days that everyone hits once in awhile. I spent 3.5 hours in the car today, was away from home for 10.5 hours and was only in two counties of Wisconsin.

The day started with me needing to take the kids to playgroup; we left the house at 11:30 am. While on the interstate, Ivy got a bloody nose. I couldn't easily find the box of tissues to hand her, so I pulled off to the side. Then I dropped the console tray between the two front seats of the van and crawled around the seats to find the tissues and hand them to Ivy. Without other incidents, I pulled back onto the interstate and travelled on.

As we neared our destination, I spotted a truck pulled over by a county sheriff. The deputy was demonstrating a heel-toe walk for the person who was wearing a distinctive brown cowboy hat. I glanced at the clock and saw it was just after noon. I then wondered: is that person still drunk from last night or did they start drinking early? Then we drove on to playgroup, where I dropped the kids off so I could make my 1:30 dentist appointment. I got back in the van and retraced my route. The truck was still parked alongside the road and the distinctive hat could be seen in the back seat of the sheriff's car. I guess he didn't pass the field test, huh?

On the trip up, I remembered that I had forgotten the book I planned to read while waiting for the dentist. If there were no hang ups with traffic, I would just have enough time to stop and get the book. Luckily, traffic was moving along (except for the person pulled over for speeding on the interstate) and I was able to drop by home and grab the book. Leaving our house, I spotted two people walking in the parking lot of the nearby gas station. The male of the two dropped to his knees in the parking lot and bent his head down as if in Muslim prayer (time 1:19 pm). The woman he is with just stopped and stood by him. I thought praying in the middle of a parking lot seems risky, but maybe something else was going on. Since I only had 10 minutes to get to my appointment and that gas station is right across from a police station, I did not stop to see if something was wrong.

I got to the dentist and had to wait a bit to be called back. I used this time to read and relax a bit. Since the filling was in the second bicuspid (I think that is the right tooth name), we had decided to spend the extra money to get a tooth colored filling. It was apparently not a very deep decay spot, so the dentist gave me the choice of it being numbed or not. But since the tooth had already been a bit painful, I decided to go ahead and get the shot. At least they are now using some sort of quick acting gel to numb the gum first. I then spent the next 5-10 minutes discussing drunk drivers with the dental assistant whose husband is a police officer. Talk about an interesting discussion! Especially on a day where I was driving a lot.

I left the dentist office at 2:00 pm and headed back to playgroup to hang out for a while with my mom friends, retracing the route I had already driven twice. Unsurprisingly, the truck was still sitting in the location where the guy was presumably arrested. The kids were happily playing and I sat and chatted with my friends. At some point, I lamented that we were not filming a movie because someone could have slapped me and I wouldn't have felt a thing. We stayed there until 4:30 pm when it was time to get in the car and spend an hour driving to another friend's house, where we were supposed to spend the evening.

We arrived at our destination at 5:30, having survived rush hour traffic on the interstate and the beltline we settled in for a relaxing evening. I helped a friend with touching up her hair color while her husband cooked dinner for the kids and us and pseudo-supervised the children. When we finished with her hair, the kids were eating and he was playing Knights of the Old Republic on the XBox. I got my dinner and kibbitzed his playing until the kids finished and decided to go outside to play with a paleontology kit. The kids spent the next hour or so digging plastic bones out of a plaster "rock" managing to get dust all over themselves and the front porch. We adults sat inside and watched some exercise videos.

We left their house and arrived back home at 10:00 pm. I got the girls some milk and as they were drinking it, Glenn arrived home and we put them to bed. It is the end of an exhausting day and I am tired and a bit crabby. I decided that this day was just weird enough to deserve some sort of memorial, so here you are. If you have read this far, I commend you! Thanks for listening to my debrief.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

A little old lady kissed my husband...

Tonight, on the way home, we are taking the exit to our house when a Toyota Camry Solara convertible is in front of us moving in a strange manner. The car was going slowly, driving very near the curb. I assumed the driver was drunk. The driver stopped on the exit ramp, we stopped behind them, and the car behind us honked. At this point, the driver gets out of the convertible and comes back to us. Much to our surprise, it is a little old lady looking for Williamson street.

We lead her to a nearby gas station and started to give her directions. She was looking very confused and I could tell that she was at the end of her rope. Apparently, her son is here in town and very ill with M.S. and she didn't know if she was ever going ot see him again. A friend of hers sent her the plane ticket to Chicago and paid for the rental car. She arrives here in Madison at 10:00 PM and gets lost. She apparently was very low on sleep and every emotional about seeing her son. She and her son's caretaker were trying to surprise him by not letting him know that his mom was coming to visit. She breaks down into tears as this story comes in one of those no sleep / high emotions stream of consciousness burst.

Glenn starts giving her directions and she is looking tired and confused. When he says that she is not far, she grabs his face and kisses him on the cheek. Glenn writes out directions and then explains them to her. She is extremely confused and offers to give us money for the gas to lead her there. Glenn looks at me, and we tell her that money is not necessary and we will lead her there. She throws $2 in the car window to me, and I try to give it back to her. Glenn drives slowly and cautiously leading the way. We get her there and Glenn gets out of the car to make sure she knows that she is there. He gets back in and we head home, leaving her to find parking.

Hopefully, she has a good visit with her son, but Glenn and I will never know. I wish her and her son the best.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005


We went out for Chinese food tonight and ate at Hong Kong Cafe. After dinner, the check was brought with 4 fortune cookies on it. These were some of the most interesting fortunes I have ever received. Make specific note that mine is not a complete thought ("Behind an able man, there are always." what????) and the Glenn and Rose got the same fortunes, but with different lucky numbers and different "Learn Chinese" phrases. I also particularly like "Yao-Li-The effect of medication" as a useful phrase.