Monday, August 21, 2006
Car,train,ambulance, no plane
Mmmm, Friday night was full of delicious wood chopping. NOT! I think I managed to fill the wheel-barrow once or twice before I threw in the towel. Of course, it was preceded by running behind a searing hot lawnmower. I should have thrown a couple of burger patties on the damn thing first. At least I would have the feeling that I was in pursuit of a worthy goal. Mmmm, ground red meat. Extra juicy. Ah, but as usual, I digress. In most places, the pastoral expanse looks like a beige carpet of tinder. One stray spark and it would sear millions of acres. Of course, that would mean less mowing ... hmmm. Brilliantly, I lit up my last cigar and went to town. Alas, I was too careful and nothing was ignited.
It's 0230 Saturday morning and Jake is invading our bed again. Not that I would usually mind on the weekend. I need the sleep though. This nagging stitch in my side is making sleep quite elusive and we have a trip planned to NYC. Instead of subjecting my already semi-battered frame to more abuse, I retire to the basement and restlessly toss till the Somewhat Irritated Mrs eventually comes down and kicks me in the chops as a wake-up call. Heh, you can't be noble all the time, you know. Lets move along and speed up the time-line a bit. We evacuate the Manor at 0930, get to the rotting shelter they call a train station by 1000. Of course, SEPTA does not have a train arriving till 1030 so we spend the next half an hour explaining why the train is not here or why passing AMTRACK trains are not stopping for us. Every 30 seconds. Jacob is right on track from admittance to the American Social Populace. Once on the train though, he was dead silent. Completely inert. Ahhh, the fascination of boys with trains. It's magic I tell ya. It took us a bit of time to get to Trenton. Not that we were in any great hurry to get to ... Trenton. Yes, Trenton. What Trenton Makes, the World Takes. Kinda whiny, eh? Switch trains and hear complaints from Jacob that the train is not moving the second we board. Arrive Penn Station, NYC at 1215 and run off to board a subway. Jake is having his BEST. DAY. EVAR! Three trains and no end in sight. It's like he's gone to the promised land. After feasting at the cornucopia of trains, we meet up with the BIL's girlfriend before heading off to the The MIL. She is doing much better now and has been transferred to an assisted living home while she recovers from the cancer treatments. Right now, she is 75 pounds shy of nothing so the process of putting a bit of weight on her is a priority now. She never had much muscle weight so it's going to be an uphill battle. Having the Mrs and Kids stop by was certainly a big morale boost though. The BIL's girlfriend visits her on behalf of the BIL a couple times a week since he is in Boston getting his Ministerial Degree right now. Tough spot for everyone, but, as usual, things in the Haupertonain Realm of Reality is getting better all the time. The kids got to spend a bit of time with both Paw-Paw and the BIL's girlfriend, but what really exhausted them was tramping all about Lower Manhattan. At the end of the day, we took a Subway back to Penn, then a train to Trenton and finally SEPTA (ever notice South East Pennsylvania Transit Authority is nearly spelled 'septic') back to Cornwell Heights. The manor (and the lonesome hounds) greeted our weary souls at 2145. A rather full day. Here are the photo's to prove it:
Sunday, as nearly every Sunday should be, was nominally dull. Right, who am I kidding? Everything went well till the Wonder Tyrants were separated. Initially, I was in charge of Jake while the Maternalistic Mrs when shopping with Alexis cum Attila. It was all fun and games for Jake and I as we pounded in unison on the keyboards. Jake at Disney/Nickelodeon and myself at Civ/Blogger. All fun and games I tell ya. Him printing a dozen pictures (how did he learn that!) and me letting the XP virus melt my brain. Then the Mrs arrived home early. Alexis had tossed her lunch of MacDonalds sawdust and Soylent Green ... in Target. The girl has taste, I tell ya. No upchuck for Wallmart or KMart. Save that for the upscale establishment worthy of a good regurgitation. Bath, polish and switch-a-roo. Jake goes off with Mommy to scout out some 'Race car yogurt' while the littlest tyrant and I fend the Manor from the barbarian onslaught of 'civilization'. Jake had to have the yogurt with the new Pixar movie characters from 'Cars', you know. Completely different than the Scooby Do yogurt. Yep. Brand loyalty at 4 ... there are mind control drugs in those yogurt sleeves I tell ya. I'm jealous I did not think of it first. So, I wave the Mrs and Jake off, making sure that the Anti-Missile/Idiot Defense System with cold-fusion ECM package is enabled before they hit the Mean Streets of Bucks County. Then I see it ... taunting me. The yellow handle of the splitting maul jutting up, as to infer that I have a cowardly yellow streak. No, that will not stand I say! So I amble over and yank it from the block of stubborn wood that I embedded it into ... right next to the singing sword Excalibar. Chop ... chop ... chop ... time fades into the background. Then, be it 30 seconds or 30 minutes I cannot say, I hear the rattling of the airlock latch. Oh, yeah, Alexis has figured out that I am AWOL. With her best practiced Abandoned Orphan look, she beseeches me to allow her to say outside with me and help. Okay, sure. Here is a 2 lb hammer, go beat on that lump of wood over there while Oblivious Daddy finishes up this load. Then we'll go in and do some computer hacking. Pull on my gloves, (thonk) ... she hits the wood once. Lift up the maul, (Blood Curdling Scream of horror) ... what? Instead of hitting the wood, she has laid the full force of her blow on her index finger. Oh, God. She is screaming as if it were the end of all bunnies in the universe. For daddy, it was. Her finger was misshapen and immediately starting to swell. Broke? Mangled? No, wait. I drop the maul and sprint into the house ... to grab a paper towel and a few cubes of ice. Quick ... methodical ... it's all you now Dad. One bit of ice for the misshapen digit, one for the sobbing mouth. Into the Car ... buckle, double-check ... Emergency room route; mental pre-programmed destination; contingency plan Alpha; engage. The Higher brain shuts down and Animal brain moves to take control. Time distorts, space bends ... speed limit OBEYED and we are exiting the Super Saturn POS at the emergency room. Keys in ignition, engine running ... we are already inside negotiating admission. Panic Rising in daddy ... Alexis; Cucumber is a hot tamale in comparison. Her right index finger is purple and has an impossibly engorged 'fat belly'. I want to vomit. Two hours later, we are playing 'whisper' and she is getting the lion's share of "aw, she is so CUTE!" looks from the various medical denizens of Abington (read: Government experimental lab-52) Emergency Center. I'm thinking that I need to call the Mrs before she gets home, but we are escorted to the Radiology (XRay) ward where three shots of her impossibly small hand are taken. Daddy holds the lead vest over her and sucks up all the extra gamma radiation. I can take it. We watch as the images pop up on a screen much too quickly. A quick glance from one of the technicians give me a lift ... there is no saddend look or grimace of "oh, that one is going to have to come off". At worse, it appears to be a simple crushing bruise. Within a few minutes, the Attending confirms my conclusion and fits Alexis with a splint to keep her from banging it about. My need to call the Uninformed Mrs rears it's head as I reach for my phone only to realize that I had left it in the now conspicuously absent vehicle. Talking to the Valet Staff (Yes, the emergency room has valet parking. High-Brow!), they know who I am and will bring the car around ASAP. Which means about 3 days because they parked it in Toledo. Along with the cell phone that has been ringing non-stop with calls from the Mrs. She had, again, come home earlier than expected. There are about 2000 missed calls on the phone and I check NONE of them before calling the Panicked Mr's phone. She picks up on the 1st ring, like she was expecting a call or something. I blurt out that everything is ok and we are all ok. 'Where!?', We are just leaving the Hospital, Alexis hurt her finger. We are heading home as I speak. 'Why!?' It's a long story, we'll be home shortly. 'Oh, good. I have the emergency room on the other line and they don't know if you are there or not.' Heh ... who could miss us? It was a rough day for Alexis, but she got some of Jake's Race-Car Yogurt.
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