A Penny for Your Pardon

Gnarly day. Yes, I am six days away from 45 years of age and I say gnarly. I also say rad, awesome, sick, yummy, dee-lish (usually only about my daughter’s kisses), ad nauseum. However I don’t dress inappropriately for my age and hardly use profanity so…well…there.

Woke to a financial surprise and not a good one. Tension with the hubby. Flashbacks to my poor upbringing as well as the feast and famine pendulum uncertainty we lived in later years with my stepfather. One year we’re on family trips to Paris and Cannes, the next year my mom is boiling water for our baths because we couldn’t pay for hot water? the gas bill? I’m not sure. But I know we lived in those extremes constantly while putting on a show that we were thriving and normal.

A few phone calls and amazingly calm conversations later, all is tentatively well. I left my husband to his business and took the kids to the beach on our last day in sunny SoCal. And indeed it has been and was today. Gorgeous. Smells and feels like Chicago in the spring but with ocean air to boot and less rain and humidity. And sun. Lots of sun.

My children continued their bad habit as of late, complaining about EVERYTHING including each other, EVERY other FREAKIN’ minute of most of my time with them. They whine (daughter), SASS (both, but usually my son) at an exponential rate, and retort with negative outlooks and opinions the likes of Eyore on Adderol.

I break down. I verbally surrender and begin to cry. All I want is to enjoy one of my favorite places on earth with my favorite people, the beauty, the peace, and all I get is discontent at every turn, I declare in tears. My adorable little stinkers are now crawling over the seats and onto me like baby monkeys, imploring me not to give up, “we’re sorry, we’ll SHOW you!” (heard THAT before).

Well, at least it would seem they are not sociopaths.

They did show me. A little look or word here and there but we managed a serene and joyful afternoon.

Where’s the service? What’s with the penny? It’s a stretch. So I ask for your pardon.

I did have the opportunity to be a trustworthy mom/stranger and watch a little girl my children had been playing with for a bit. The mom asked if I minded, she needed to take their little Chihuahua potty a little ways from where we were, all the way back to the boardwalk, past it to the grassy parts by the street. Of course I said yes. All I had to do was continue sitting on my butt, zen-ing out to the beautiful scene of my kids frolicking in the ocean, chasing seagulls and each other, digging holes to China.

Later, after baths, dinner, movie, researching ideas for last minute service ideas online during the movie, kids went to sleep and I began packing, I dropped a penny by my bed. It landed tails up. I turned it over to show heads. Housekeeping  may be superstitious. DON’T worry. I know to leave her a real tip for her hard work this week.

Anyway, that’s it. That’s all I got.

Stay with me. I promise more exciting, stealth-like service missions are coming. There’s nothing to do in Chicago right now but plan elaborate ways to serve. Oh and the kids go back to school. 🙂 I’m not relieved or anything. Really. I’m not.

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