Wednesday, August 31, 2005
One of THOSE days
Attitude is everything, I've decided. Like today. It's 11:00 in the morning, and today should suck. On my way to taking my partner to work, the car died. Just ran out of gas. The gas gauge has been wonky for some time now, but I usually keep a careful watch on the miles I've gone on the odometer. Except today. Today I spaced. So, we rolled to a stop ten blocks from my partner's work. She hoofed it in high heels, and I entertained Mason, our two year old, while waiting for Triple-A to show up. Entertaining Mason is ridiculously easy. I should mention that the place we broke down was a gorgeous part of Saint Paul called Summit Avenue. We were up at the "top" of Summit, which also known as Cathedral Hill, because the Saint Paul Cathedral is right there. The houses are mansions -- grand, grand mansions. The lawns are expansive and expertly maintained. Huge, ancient oak trees line the broad boulevards. Flowers bloom in profusion. Birds sing on every branch. It's like paradise in the middle of the city. Not a bad place to have to sit and wait. And today is simply gorgeous. It's one of those amazing end-of-summer days where the sun shines brightly, sky is crystal blue, the clouds are fluffy and white, and the air holds a touch of autumn chill. Mason and I strolled around near the car, picking up fallen Maple leaves and arranging them according to a toddler's sense of order, which in this instance meant we moved the leaves from the sidewalk to on top of a retaining wall. Then the big truck came and loaded up the car and took us all for a ride to Grand-Wheeler Sinclair service station. I had them tow us because it would bring us closer to home, and I had other things I wanted my mechanic to tune-up on the car. Then, we wandered home -- toddler pace. Lots of stopping to chase squirrels ("icicle!" For some reason the way Mason says "a squirrel" it comes out more like "i - cicle!"), lots of clambering up on to my shoulders so we could read the pine cones in the various pine trees we passed, we even stopped at our local park ("ding-ding" park, so named because it's near a fairly active rail road crossing) for a romp on the monkey bars. We got home after a few hours, and I discovered that I forgot my house keys in the car back at the service station. Luckily, I live in a old house -- it was built in 1911 (Taft was president), so it's actually fairly easy to pop a window screen and shimmy in. I left Mason on the front porch with some "bon-bons" (his word for candy), and I broke in. Because I'm usually pretty good about closing the windows so someone else can't do this, I had to clamber in the small kitchen window, which is actually a few feet off the ground. To this involved climbing up the gas pipe and throwing myself at the screen. I wish someone had been around to film it. I'm sure I looked hillarious trying to wedge my big butt in through that small window. I managed to get in and not fall on my face. Triumph! All this without my first cup of coffee. I should be grouchy. I should be pulling hair or gnashing teeth. But, I was in the right frame of mind, and we had nowhere to go and no time we had to be there. It's been a beautiful day.