Monday, March 13, 2006
She'll be commin' 'round the mount'n when she comes....
Whew. Made it through the weekend by the skin of my teeth. Not that I'm a poor practitioner of oral hygiene mind you. Eww, now that I think of it, the concept has a disturbing cannibal over tone to it. Like that scene from Cat People where the ... ummm, yeah. Tangents again. I do that a bit too much. Disturbing to myself even. Speaking of disturbing, the last season finale episode of Battle Star Galactica was a real lump of poo. Heh, neat convergence there with what Mouse had to snipe about. I won't get too much into my Sci-Fi show watching predilections, but this pretty much ruined the show for me. There was nearly nothing that surprised me or piqued my interest. Come on guys, throw me a bone here or something! Show me the resolute metal of the human spirit or something. Jeeze. Anyways, that was that for my TV viewing for the week. Beh. At least there was an interesting 'Ghost in the Shell SAC 2nd Gig' episode on TiVo for me to watch and sooth my troubled mind.
I was not ready for Saturday. More likely, Saturday actively resisted my effort by instigating a low-level insurgency through the twins. I wanted to get going early to avoid any issues with crowding or traffic, but it was not to be. Dealing with the dogs, the wood stove, breakfast and so forth just turned the first two hours of the day to chowder. I had thought that if I could get up early enough and wrap up the morning activities before the twins rose to the sound of singing song birds, all would be well. Instead, it was Jake who strode into the room at 0830 and pushed me out of bed. Of course, all the banging and stomping brought the hounds ire to bear and I had to deal with their grumblings of hunger and discontent (potty time) first. Since I was there, lighting the fire was in order too. Sure, it's getting warmer now but I've got a stack of wood I can burn. If I did not have the wood, you could be certain that the temp would dive into the 20's. Kinda like what is going on in Minnesota right now. A blizzard even. Sheesh. When I did finally get going, we ran into a traffic jam almost immediately. A rolling pot-hole patch team had gnarled the flow of vehicles on 95 south and then there was some other dust-up on 676 west that I needed to slug through. There must be some sort of convention going on in Philly since there is NEVER this much congestion on the weekends. It was so bad that Alexis started to complain about her weak stomach and I knew that the trouble was just around the corner. Fortunately, a little milk helped calm her till I managed to find a parking lot. It was within the same time-zone as the Please Touch Museum. I've been planning to bring the Twins here for a long time, but I just finally said "Let's do it!" and we went.
Ahhh, the museum. I'll be honest with you about this: I was not impressed. The Grandparents have something called the Science Center near the FOB and it is light-years better than this place. The real problem I had was the multiplicity of exits that the Twins had easy access to where they would end up strolling onto the busy and rough streets of Philly. I was frantic in my attempts to keep both of them within my sight at all times. There was not nearly enough 'stuff' to hold the kids interest either. Nothing to break I suppose. There was a small train set that Jake like, but not nearly enough track or trains. Additionally, the play house was significantly devoid of things to do. The supermarket was the center of gravity for nearly all the children in the joint and became a battle royale. A lot of poorly behaved children mixed in with some morally absent parents. Not the fault of the facility mind you, but it was disappointing to see. One of the high-points was the puppet show that completely captured the children. For the 2.5 hours we were there, the 20 minute show was shangrila. All in all, the admission fees and the extortion of putting the gift shop right in line with the exit (Disney Style Placement), the whole thing cost 60$. Not including the 10$ for hotdogs on the way out and 8.50$ for parking. Oh, and the traffic jam going OUT of the city since the pothole crew was going the other direction. GAWD! I could not get any slack cut for me. When we got back home, the kids played in the sun on the Twin Towers of Ultimate Conquest. That cost me ... nothing. Well, I did have to pick up a couple piles of poo (see above link), but the 2 hours of sandy play time was probably one of the better ideas for the day.
Sunday was a grey and melancholy presentation. Buckets of rain descended upon the Haupertonian Empire leaving a cold and gloomy prospect for anything resembling fun. Eventually, we packed up and rolled off to Produce Junction to do a little shopping. Peculiar place, this wholesale fruit/veggie stand. Most of the workers there were either teen-agers or migrant workers but were significantly more agreeable then most 'professionals' I bump into at supermarkets. We grabbed what we needed and paid in cash. I like it. At one point, I had picked up a bag of brussels sprouts but decided against it after standing in line for a couple of minutes. I asked Alexis to put them back with the other veggies and she successfully matched the color/shape of the contents of the bag. The entire line was standing in silence as she inspected each display till she found the one that had the other sprouts. After she pushed the bag back onto the pile, the entire line broke out in cheers and applause. This time, she did not come wailing back to me because of the sudden shocking level of noise, but was glowing with confidence from the wave of approval as she skipped back and did a little victory dance. Daddy was certainly pleased. After this, we went to a 'real' supermarket and paid the mark-up for whole milk and chocolate soy milk. Credit cards, polished floors and all the chemicals you can stomach. The cold of the refrigerated sections was only surpassed by the technological glare of the scanner and the cold shoulder of the other drones in line at the checkout. The contrast was overwhelming on multiple levels. I need to get the garden going ASAP.
The day ended up with the kids and I snuggling in bed and watching Scooby-Doo for a bit. I would nod off for a couple minutes only to be woken up and alerted that either commercial were playing (damn TiVo has spoiled my kids) or that the episode was over. At one point, an long segment was playing and Alexis grabbed one of my eye-lids and pulled it back like an old retracting shade. OUCH! Watching a little too much Tom and Jerry, eh? Later in the evening, the Mrs came back from her extended stay in NYC. Salvation at last. Indeed, she took over the bath duties and assisted with the night-time dressing/story time activities while I slowly unwound from days of semi-death bed sickness combined with the daily adversities of high energy physics masquerading as my offspring. Ahhh, did not get anything but the laundry done this weekend. Looks like a particularly busy week in in order.
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