Despite what Dove chocolate Wrappers and old Hollywood musicals imply, a person who loves routine is not necessarily better off becoming totally loose and spontaneous. Once in a while maybe.
Today did not measure up to the historic day, a decade or so ago, when our family attended the funeral of a neighbor, I drove to a co-op planning meeting only to be told by the coordinator’s husband that since his children were sick, the meeting had moved from South Attleboro to Fall River. Then my husband, after phoning several co-op member’s husbands and member’s cell phones finally finding one that wasn’t switched off, informed me that instead of going to the Providence airport to pick up my mother, I needed to go to the Boston one. At midnight.
Things were much, much calmer today, except that I felt like I was forgetting something, but like the high water day of rapidly changing plans, we do have a funeral.
To get M’s lego robot supplies together to show to our friend’s children’s 4-h club, I dropped Dan off at work, then returned home with lots of robot parts from his office closet to study maps to see how to get the meeting at 12 noon. If we left here at 11:20, we’d have time. My mother phoned to arrange to give M his Latin lesson at 10 (plenty of time to leave for 4-h) when the doorbell rang and I heard voices in the back hallway. Ah, that’s what I forgot, we were to babysit a friend’s toddlers while she went to an Ob/Gyn appointment. Out came the Duplos and Thomas Trains, K got to play big sister, which she did with zest and tact. They also left before 10:30, behaved beautifully, and looked cute doing it.
Google maps gave me three choices for driving; take the highway (boring) drive a slightly familiar way using part of a high way (safe), or take backroads past 3 ponds, a state forest and some farms. I copied out the instructions, but didn’t decide which to choose until I got to the corner of Fairview Avenue and 118. The Dove wrappers would approve of me, I took the pretty way, saw ponies and cattle, historic churches and mare’s tail clouds.
I was proud of M’s robot talk, all that stage experience in AWIP plays paid off.
We did need to hurry from the 4-h meeting though, our friends who usually spend Monday afternoons with us were visiting here from 2-4:30 instead. When I arrived home, Ben had brewed coffee, taken out the garbage and recycling, and was washing the dishes; another kid to be proud of! After the visit, I took M and K with me to pick Dan up, and Ben walked to band. I had barely started dinner when Ben returned, so instead of waiting for after dinner to go the wake for his 13 year old friend who had died suddenly, Dan and Ben drove over while the biscuits and tomato cooked.
But next time we have a fast changing day of unusual driving and activities, I hope there’s no need to plan around a funeral or wake.