I had the pleasure today of bringing Sugar to the local Girl Scout store to buy her Juniors vest that I never got around to getting last year. Of course we also needed a slew of patches, not that I knew what I needed to get. The woman working there must have been in the first Girl Scout troop ever formed. She was old and crotchety. I can’t say as I blame her. Their expected shipment was late and they were out of everything that me and 100 other customers were looking for. To top it off, I waited in line twice and both times, other evil Girl Scouts and their mothers cut in front of me. I must have wearing my Invisible Ice Princess cape today.
Sugar and I were in no great hurry to get home so we ran another errand, then stopped by to check out a new café. I noticed it several weeks ago, it’s impossible to miss the bright purple awnings. We pulled in and decided to have lunch. The menu wasn’t very big, but Sugar and I each found something to order. As we waited for our food, she colored and made a puppy out of the Wiki Stix they provided. I indulged in a little “people watching.”
Before going on, I should mention that I’m a little strict when we eat out. I expect my kids to behave and use their best manners. This doesn’t always occur and we’ve had interesting experiences in restaurants in the past. When Sugar was about two, she decided that she didn’t want her hot dog and sent it sailing through the air. As fast as I moved after it, there was no catching the flying dog. I made my apologies and beat feet out of there. Fast forward five years and Spice had a tantrum in the same restaurant. She picked up her plate and banged it against the table repeatedly while shouting, “I’M ALL DONE!” This is a restaurant that we go to a lot. We know the owners and the wait staff, so it was embarrassing. The wait staff took it in stride and even laughed about it. Years later, our waitress mentions Spice’s impatience every time we see her.
When my kids misbehave so publicly, I’m mortified and I work double time to get the behavior to stop. Sometimes the Evil Mommy Eye works, sometimes it doesn’t. Worst case, I clean up their messes, smile apologetically at diners seated near us and we hurry out of the restaurant. I hope it’s obvious to anyone witnessing the buffoonery that the behavior exhibited by my children is not acceptable to me, their parent.
Directly in my line of sight today was a family that I guessed to be grandparents, a mother and her two kids. I first noticed them when the little girl took the lid off her ice water and dumped the contents into her macaroni and cheese. None of the adults said anything to her, they simply took the cup from her. After that, the little girl got up from her chair and wandered around the table, snatching food from her older brother, then moseying around the restaurant. She kept chewing her food and opening her mouth really wide so everyone else in the place could see what she was eating. She went to the table next to them, which was set up for the next round of customers. She fiddled with the silverware, even sticking a spoon or two in her mouth, perhaps checking to see which one fit best, I don’t know. She walked down the hall to the bathrooms and was clearly out of her mother’s sight. She came back and swiped more food from her brother. All the while, none of the three adults at the table addressed her behavior. Clearly, they weren’t paying attention anyway. I was appalled by her behavior and the lack of attention that any of the adults paid her. I wished that I was one of those people that could speak up when they see shit like that happen. If you don’t want to discipline your kids, fine, but have some respect for the rest of the people trying to enjoy their meal. See food mac and cheese is disgusting and watching a kid do somersaults between tables isn’t cute.
By the time we got home, it was almost time for my reunion with Gretchen. I got to the salon early and waited for a bit while she finished up with another client. Then it was my turn and it was glorious! We had a gazillion things to talk about, our conversation was a continuation of our phone chat the other day. I am not afraid to say to her, “This is what I have to spend and this is what I want done. Can you make it happen?”
In the midst of our chatter, she managed to get my hair cut and colored. I was delighted when she sat down next to me after putting me under the dryer so we could continue our chat. Some relationships feel like a comfy pair of slippers. No matter how long you go without wearing them, they fit perfectly the next time you put them on.
It was a great day, spending a little one on one time with Sugar. We talked about little bits of things, and mostly enjoyed having each other’s full attention. I’m sure to have date with Spice in the near future, so she can have some special time too. It was an added bonus to hook back up with an old friend and find that we still like each other and have even more in common than we thought we did.