Tuesday, October 09, 2007

A tough trip

I have some bizarre kids. For flights both down (to Baltimore) and back home they were all very well behaved. I was even complimented by random strangers for how wonderful they were. It was a nice "practice run" for the trip to the West Coast next month to visit my brother, his wife and their new son. Meaning my nephew. Did I tell you I'm an aunt?

The two solid days with my dear, dear friend - who is also one of my sons' godmothers - was a test in patience, love and compassion. By her. I was just mortified. To be fair there were some parts of the days that conspired against them. We thought it would be fun to ride a boat in the harbor. It took us from the Aquarium to the Science Museum. We were assured it ran every 15 minutes. After we visited the Science Museum we got ice cream and waited in the 90 degree heat for nearly an hour for the liars who stole our money the boat that never came. The kids melted in every sense of the world.

She also doesn't have children which means her new condo is a real grown up place. A grown up place for a grown up with expensive tastes. So while I enjoyed the luxury for 32 seconds, we were both in a collective panic that the kids would smear chocolate on the suede couch or track dirt onto custom made rugs.

Then there was the whiny belligerence that just seemed louder, more obnoxious and more persistent then at home. Maybe because I had a witness for over 48 hours.

One bright note was our visit to the Aquarium. At the very top floor is a tropical forest. While climbing stairs we noticed a blue headed parrot fly toward us and land on a ledge near my head. I was able to adjust my camera to compensate for the light behind it. The little guy seemed to be posing for us. I handed my camera to my son and he got even closer to the parrot. His photos didn't turn out as well but it was amazing how close he was getting to the parrot.

"Oh my goodness!" declared a volunteer in a blue shirt behind me. "In all my years here I have never seen him get so close to any person!" She went on to say she hadn't seen him interact with other visitors like he seemed to be. Especially not children.

Thanks little parrot for giving me some bright blue during a hair-graying weekend. And thanks for recognizing my kids are inherently good. Especially since I forget sometimes.


Flower Child said...

Oh you poor thing. Sorry about the boat. And our lovely tropical weather. Hey but at least you got to enjoy the aquarium and your kids didn't make planeloads of enemies! More than most can hope for!

chelle said...

Amazing how we cannot see the forest among the trees ... or ... you know the saying ... My kids rock but then I forget they rock and get all flustered. At the end of the day it is wonderful to remember!

Goofball said...

oh...why did the boat not show up? did you get a refund? oh that would piss me off so much. I am jealous though that you've spent time in a 90F temperatures, while here fall has definately come.

hmmm no kids can wait well, I am sure you have great kids, even in an 'adult' house.

Hurraaay for the parrot. Beautiful bird!

Nap Warden said...

I don't have it in me to travel with my team yet. Good for you for doing it! I know it's hard being in a place that is not kid-proofed.

Jami said...

I absolutely HATE how bad I feel after the fact when I get angry at my kids for something or other. Like right now I feel like a total shit for yelling at them this morning. Bad day so far for everybody at our house, so there's some niceness due everyone tonight.

Jenn in Holland said...

Nothing says stress like taking your kids into a new environment. Especially an environment where you want them to be stellar little angels so when they act like, well, regular kids, you feel like hell has broken loose.
Boy have I ever been there. It's easy to forget just how good they are when you are laying down perfection expectations upon them. The truth is pretty-damn-good, is just good enough. It's good to be reminded of all of that sometimes. That you gleaned that message from your visiting avian friend, is awful darn cool of you.
You are an amazing woman, you are.

painted maypole said...

it is so true that our children seem louder when we have a constant witness to their bad behavior.

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Oh, huge, huge hugs. That's a really rough thing to go through. For my son, it often took him a couple of days to "adjust" when we took him traveling, so if it was a long weekend type situation, he'd be "adjusting" (ie. obnoxious) the whole time.

And it's hard on them to be in environments that they can't be kids in - they can sort of sense the tension, I think.

Do something low key and relaxing this weekend for YOURSELF if you can.

Again, HUGE hugs!