Saturday, September 21, 2013

Toe Ring - Bartok - Epiphany - Frog

My mother came into my bedroom with her pink and black pajamas on. "Get up! We're going to be late, we have to leave in thirty minutes." Now that my friend, is not the kind of thing a teenage girl wants to hear when she has any place to go besides the kitchen or livingroom.

I rolled out of my bed and fetched my clothes out of the backpack I had not yet unpacked from the day before when I was baby sitting my pastors three young children. A yellow skirt and my blue T-shirt from Wall Mart with an owl and the caption, "It's owl good", exactly not what I was feeling this morning. I had just got out my razor when I was told to get Jubal up.
        I came to his bed and bent down and patted his back. "Jubal, it's time to get up. Good morning." I smiled.
        He was up instantly and the first thing out of his mouth as he stumbled around the room was "Play, play" He rubbed his tummy and almost fell over.
        "No, it's not time to play now. It's time to go potty."
He groggily followed me to the bathroom. Groggy toddlers are so cute. With him sitting on the potty I finished shaving. I gave myself razor burn and missed an entire two and a half inch patch of stubby hair. Ack! So embarrassing.. and here I am telling you all about it.
       Well anyways, all this time Savannah had been making french toast and scrambled eggs. I sent Jubal to Savannah to get something to eat. Savannah was already dressed, had her hair braided, and had her bag packed for later today. How did she do that? I continued my mad rush; scarfed down a couple of bites of toast; spent three minutes looking for my deodorant which should have been on my dresser but was of course in my backpack; found my-toe ring.


You see, when I was five and six years old there was a certain high school girl named Miss Jamie whom I thought was, to use a word I saw on Facebook today, the epitome of maturity without being boring like the grown ups. She wore toe-rings. For the next ten years of my life I always wished I had a toe-ring. Then two winters ago my grandmother went through her jewelry box with my sister and I and there they were, two beautiful toe-rings! I didn't wear them that year though because they did not fit exactly right and I was afraid to lose them while we were traveling. They ended up packed in a box with the rest of my jewelry and only last week I unpacked them. Since then, even though they still are a little too big I have been trying to wear one everyday. I have only remembered four times so far.

Yes, so the point is, it was a rushed morning. I nearly forgot my piano books which would have put our entire mission in jeopardy. Mom, Savannah, Jubal, and I all finished our breakfast in the car. It was a forty minute drive to Pensacola. Lessons went well. I had worked hard that week and I made a lot of progress. One piece I did not do so well in though, Bartok. I like to play his music but I like Bach better and so that one got less attention. Lessons over we started off for lunch.

Normal American life.

First we tried McDonald's. Jubal was very excited, he loves the play place at "McNow" Unfortunately there was no play place so we turned around to go back to the truck. This nearly caused a melt down for our little boy. We consoled him with the fact that we were going to go look for another one. Mom got out her smart phone which soon enough led us to Chic-fi-le. Jubal had a lot of fun playing with the other children in the play place.

Next we spent quite a while shopping for swimsuits. This is a peculiar time to be shopping for swimwear you must be thinking. Yes it is, but as you should be well aware of, we Harris' are peculiar. Finished with that we zipped on over to and through Hobby Lobby. Savannah brought in her bag. In it resided a crotcheted doll with a blue dress. Savannah plucked the doll out of the bag and used it for comparison when trying to choose the right sized button for eyes. The doll blankly faced the store and uttered no opinion on being so rudely yanked from her soft slumber in the cozy orange bag.

      With thirty minutes to spare we took the nine minute drive to the chiropractor. Jubal stayed in his car seat and took a nap. Savannah stayed with him. Mom and I went in and took two of the three remaining empty seats in the lobby. Not much happened. Just the usual waiting room things. A useless program on television, a plethora of magazines and newspapers were left untouched by all of the listless customers. A little boy played games on his mothers iPhone. Which by the way happened to have the exact same case as my mom's. A man slouched over his phone, another man leaned back in the sofa. A purple clothed woman with a cheery air altogether dissimilar from that of the crowded room called a name.
      "Mr. -------?"
The chubby man sitting on the couch lunged forward with a grunt and fell back against the cushion. He tried again and managed to make it to his feet. His hand went involuntarily to his back as he let out another grunt. His ball cap shaded his face but I could still see the grimace. He shuffled his way towards the woman and they both disappeared through the door. I looked forward to seeing this man come back out. I wanted to see if he would still be shuffling and if his face would still have those pained creases on it. I was disappointed however as I was called in before he came back out.
       The purple lady led me to a room I had not visited before in the past. She sat me down and asked me what I needed done. She asked if she was correct in thinking that I usually had an ultra-sound. I said yes. She was mixed up and thought I had it done on my back but I told her that I had it done on my wrists and then after that whatever else I needed done was adjusted. (I don't know exactly how it is supposed to help but they always do it.) She took out the pink lotion and put a few cold squirts on my wrists. Then she turned on the machine and ran the round disc over my wrists in a circular motion. Normally the disc warms up during the process but this time it didn't. I don't know why. We chatted about the weather, weekend plans, and how I had injured my arms. When she was finished she wiped the lotion off and told me "Doc will be in to see you in a minute." When he came I told him my back had been having spasms since noon of yesterday. He felt around my bones and then twisted my back like a DNA strand. Snap, crack, rumble, pop, crack!  Then he twisted me the other way. "You should be feeling better by tonight."
       When I returned to the waiting room Mom was gone. I sat on the couch and waited. A very large bald man was filling out a form next to me. He was in serious pain because he was grimacing, grunting, and groaning. When he tried to stand up it was even worse. A thin man with a mustache wearing a white T-shirt offered to take the clipboard up to the counter for him. The man accepted gratefully, "Yes thank you." as he readjusted his glasses.
        Mom came through the door. "There you are, I knew you had snuck off." I said as stood up.
      We went to the front counter and the two women talked of rescheduling, and of a massage session. I did not listen because I was preoccupied with the dividing wall between the office and the lobby. It was about four and a half inches thick. I thought of whether or not the was was structurally necessary or if it was only cosmetic. I decided on the latter. It sounded hollow. It had wall paper on both sides but none on the exposed middle.
      I picked up Mom's phone, "Look Mom," I held it lengthwise against the wall "the wall is as thick as your phone."
       She looked at me incredulously, "I see."
     The woman on the other counter let out a snorty chuckle and leaned back in her chair. She ran her hand across the face and pushed back her bangs. "You can definitely tell it's the weekend."
      She and Mom both kept laughing through the rescheduling process.
      When we walked out the door I told Mom "I said that because I was thinking if I was good at estimating or not. I wanted to see if it was as wide as I thought it was. That's why I used your phone."
     "I believe you, I believe you." She laughed. "Did you notice everyone in the room was cracking up? They all were chuckling."
       I put my head back as I laughed "Well I'm glad I could make their day happier." and I skipped to my door on the other side.
  
 I thought about what the lady had said "You can tell its the weekend." and at that moment in the parking lot of the chiropractor I had an epiphany. I have always wondered what was so special about the weekend. Why people looked forward to it so much; why they treasured it and savored every moment of it and how they mourned when it was gone; how they let out all of that venom on Monday and gave it a bad name, how they took to coffee as their only comfort. Now I knew. I had had a busy, scheduled, stressful seven days myself and was really looking forward to Saturday when there was nothing planned and I could just relax. People love the weekend so much because those three days are the days they don't have to do anything if they don't want to. They can stay home and sleep in, they can go to the park if they want, they could do chores around the house which would be incredibly satisfying because it is there own work for themselves and not for their boss. I on the other hand don't really have any emotional attachment to the weekend because for me "weekends" can happen on any day in the week. Being home schooled lets that happen. I don't have to go somewhere every single day. I could have Monday and Tuesday all to myself and then I could spend the whole Saturday taking care of Mrs. Virginia. I could be baby sitting Sunday night. Weekends are days of freedom. Which for a lot of America are Friday evening, Saturday, and Sunday. My weekends can be anytime. Thus my lack of understanding with the infatuation of Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

      When we got in I was loud and woke up Jubal. We turned some music on and he eventually went back to sleep. I picked up Mom's phone again and put my thumb up next to it.
      "What are you doing?" Mom asked
      "I'm measuring it." I scootched my thumb further down the phone. It took me four and a half end-of-your-thumb-till-you-get-to-the-first-bend lengths to measure the phone. "Four and a half inches. Just like I thought."

We drove towards home now. Jubal knew that we were going to the Smith's home. Dad would meet us there. As we drove up I saw Dad and Mr. Smith sitting in the lawn chairs by the grill. When we parked everyone got out Dad came to help carry things. I sat and took the tags off of our new swimsuits. When I walked to the house Mr. Smith greeted me with a hug.
      Dad did too. "I haven't seen you all day."
     "Good morning!" I said.
Dad had left before us that morning to meet with others at the abortion clinic and protest. After that he went to a book study at a cafe coffee place called The Drowsy Poet.
      We climbed the stairs and found Bethany inside. Hellos were exchanged. We talked about the tower thing Bethany was building with some plastic sticks. Our brothers used to have a set of those when we were younger so we told her about what they used to build. She said her nephews were really good at it and showed us their creations. Two race cars and a grandfather clock with a motor that tuned the hands and even a door to the pendulum in the middle.
  
It wasn't long before I put on my suit. Then Bethany and I sat on the jet ski as Mr. Smith backed the trailer into the water. With a sudden acceleration we were left floating in the bay. A frog hopped over my shoulder and swam away in the water.
      "Did you see that Bethany?" I asked "A frog just jumped over my shoulder! It must have jumped over the whole thing!" and I glanced to the other side of the jet ski.
       Bethany laughed at me and said "Yes, Lydia." then she cranked the engine and we were off. Savannah got a ride on the jet ski too. We spent the day swimming in the brackish water. I went down the slide on my tummy and the normal way but I was never brave enough to go backwards. I sat perched on the slippery edge and leaned back. I squealed and yelled the whole time but never let go of the handle bars. It was scary! We ran and did cannon balls off of the dock. We even did handstands which I was terrible at on my first try. I just kicked the surface of the water with my feet and my hands never touched the bottom. But that was just a warm up. The next time I got it. Jubal was scared in the water at first and never would let go of Mom but later he got brave. He played with the sand. He would take fist fulls of it and make piles on the shore.



Bethany got out a big flat round yellow floating disc. "Look, it's a wafer." I said
    "What?"
"It's a wafer. See," I pointed across the lawn to a large floaty that we had used another time before. It is not flat, it is rather rounded. "That's a biscuit and this is a wafer."
     "It's a Kringle's." Mom said "It looks like a potato chip."
We put the yellow wafer into the water underneath the slide then took turns either trying to land on it or trying to miss it.

After a while we started to get supper ready. The men stayed outside and manned the grill. The woman went upstairs and ruled the kitchen. For supper we had burgers with lettuce wraps, roasted garlic, grilled pineapple and zucchini, baked cauliflower, and onion egg drop soup. The cauliflower was so tasty, the best I have ever had. After dinner we got out some cards. We played Sevens, Dutch Blits, and Trash. Watermelon was served which was very tasty. We girls relocated from the dining room into Bethany's bedroom where we proceeded to get goofier and goofier. Jubal was put down on the couch and the parents played dominoes. We girls talked and laughed and watched videos on the iPod. Here is one that Bethany showed me that I thought was amazing:

                              (There is a bit of a crude joke in the beginning. Sorry about that.)

Mom came in and told us we were getting ready to go. When we emerged from the bedroom Dad and Mr. Smith were talking about the kings on the playing cards. Mrs. Smith was cutting up the remaining watermelon. As she cut and we snitched pieces Mr. Smith read from a page of trivia questions. A few minutes later we were in the truck, Savannah buckling Jubal in. We got home at eleven o'clock. Everyone went straight to bed.

So there you have it. I've brought you along for a busy day with me. I am sure you are not as tired as I was at the end of it but I am sure you didn't have as much fun as me either.

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