It’s noon and the van is packed, the kids have enough water (it’s a hot day), and swaddled in my basket is a lunch of cheese on multigrain bread, roasted garbanzo beans (Nels calls them “grabanzo” beans), and carrot sticks in ice water. This morning I spent $7.34 for the food I brought my daughter’s class (a weekly ritual), have exactly $21 for the tank of gas to the city and back( the trip will take every penny), and retain $2 to buy myself a coffee (with tip) on the road.
I’m tired of driving to Olympia and back. This is the third time in about a month for the kids’ dentistry. After today, though, we will be done with sealants and fillings and the next trip won’t be until their October checkups. If I had a few bucks to buy some lunch or visit Danger Room Comics or a fabric store I’d have looked forward to this trip. Or even better, if I had someone along with me to chat. As it is I am instantly thrilled to my bones with horrific boredom at the little stretch of highway I have to traverse. I’ve never enjoyed repetitive car trips and incline my head with respect to those who don’t mind.
My daughter does well at the dentist’s and doesn’t even vomit later due to the nitrous gas administration (like she did last time). Driving back I’m impressed with my children; they are champs, not whining, not begging for McDonald’s or ice cream or telling me they’re bored. I have one earbud in (my iPod converter does not work) and the kids cope without DVD player or strenuous kiddie-music song recitation or even books, looking out the window and lost in their own thoughts. When we get home I give them something cold to drink and hug them and tell them I’m proud of them.