Thursday, April 13, 2006

A Gust of Warm Air

Might warm weather be just what I need to lift the deep funk I've been in for a few months now? Or is that too much to ask of the climate?

Let's just say that the recent glorious weather has improved my mood a bit. And that I have firmly concluded that as much as I am in thrall of the fantastic socialist life lived by the Scandinavians, their weather would kill me.

Anyway, this week's mood leavening has been brought to you by warm weather plus two nice outdoor outings with the kids. Earlier this week my mom and I took the kids to a local-ish farm, where they paid barely cursory attention to the animals. When there are big tractor tires set in a pile of sand to climb on, living creatures, even cute newborn ones (the piglets! oh the adorable piglets!) take a back seat.

This was all I had planned to do, and that alone would have been a fun little trip. Then I overheard a few other people talking about an Easter egg hayride that would be departing in about 15 minutes. Can I admit to you all that the prospect of changing my plans to go on this hayride unsettled me? (See the preceding personality DNA map for the miniscule real estate taken up by "spontaneity".) Fifteen minutes? Why, normally I need to plan something like this days in advance. Fortunately I snapped myself to attention and hustled the kids over to the tractor and wagons. I'm so glad I did -- they had a great time on the bumpy, lurching tractor ride and on the "hunt". Quotation marks seems appropriate because the eggs were dumped in highly visible color-coded piles for even the blindest of bats to find. No matter; Sean and Allie reveled in their egg finds.

Post-hayride came the inevitable Peter Rabbit/Easter Bunny visit. Sean wouldn't go up to Mr. Rabbit at all, and Allie acceded only with the proviso that I hold her. And my oh my, the death grip with which she held me in return! Apparently a giant human-shaped, voiceless bunny is a bit scary. Can't imagine why…

Today we met several parents and kids from Sean's preschool at a playground. (School is closed this week.) I had thought it would be just the one mom and boy with whom we've had playdates this year. Turns out there were six of us! I felt like, I don't know, part of a community or something. Someday I really should write about how isolated my neighborhood makes me feel. But at the playground today, I thought, "Oh! So this is what it's like to be at a park where people actually 1) go and 2) talk to each other!" We all agreed that we need to have meet-ups like this more frequently, especially once school is over for the year.

Oh! (Smacks forehead.) Jeff's dad is home from the hospital; he'll be closely monitored for several months to ensure that another clot doesn't form. Jeff informs me that his dad is already blithely disregarding doctors' orders about slowly resuming normal activities, though, so we all must keep our fingers crossed.

Here's to warmth and its healing prowess.