Thursday, August 18, 2005
Pickles vs. French fries
I took the kids into Boston for the day yesterday. I know that I shouldn't have gone... I have a ton of work to do, both household and paying, and we had a busy week last week and a busy weekend coming up, but my friend called and asked if I wanted to get together and I was so excited about someone actually calling me that I would have dropped lots more important things than a couple dollars in a paycheck to go in.

So, we went to Emily's swim lesson in the morning, which consisted primarily of a group of 5-year-olds competing to see who could go underwater more often and longest. I'm sure there have been moments of my life when I'd have been happy to hop in the pool and help them win that particular contest, but I was in a good mood yesterday. Then we headed downtown.

First we caught a juggler's show outside Faneuil Hall. The guy was moderately funny and mildly talented, so it was better than doing nothing while we waited for my friend, but not as good as chocolate or a backrub. At one point, he asked for a child to volunteer, so Emily did the "ooh, ooh" bounce and he picked the girl next to her. But both little girls were wearing pink shirts, so they both got up - so he had the other little girl help, and he gave Emily a dollar. She was thrilled.

Next, we had ice cream cones. This was the first time that I got Jacob his own cone and simply handed it over. It was precisely as messy as one might expect. The mess was slightly enhanced by the fact that he decided that the cone was only an impediment to him getting more ice cream, so he held the cone in one hand and used his other index finger as a tiny little spoon.

Emily used her dollar from the one street performer to tip another - there was a certain poetic justice in that. She found a clown who was making balloon animals and hats and belts and probably high-heeled shoes, and she got a whole array of balloons which lasted precisely 37 seconds before they started to pop. But I think she still felt it was money well-spent. Jacob, on the other hand, thought that a balloon guy with clown makeup and a bad attitude and a little balloon inflater was a horrible, horrible thing, and he very nearly climbed right up me like a monkey in a tree. Still covered in ice cream, mind you, though I was able to mostly protect myself with a towel first.

Then we wandered over to Durgin Park, where they have kid-operated fountains. Emily thought that was just fine, and Jacob was interested from afar. He doesn't like cold water, which makes me wonder at what point they lose those nerves - because I KNOW that in a year or two he'll be blue and shivery and semicomatose and he still won't want to get out of the pool.

We had dinner on the wharf, and Jacob reaffirmed that french fries are not the least little bit interesting to him, but pickles are just fine. Seriously. It's bizarre to me. And he's a little pickle vampire, too, because he'll suck on them until they're white and limp but he won't swallow them, which leads to a truly fantastic finger-swipe adventure on my part. He also likes the au jus from a French dip sandwich, just in case that ever comes up... so he definitely met his RDA of sodium yesterday.

We headed for home around 7:00, and he immediately passed out in the car, leading me to entertain horrible thoughts of destroyed nighttime routines and sleepless, cranky babies - but instead, we got home, he nursed, and passed right back out again. Hooray for overstimulation!

So, now it's back to work on all of the things I should have been doing yesterday. But it was worth it.