Monday, November 17, 2008

Stormy Seas

The photo above was taken last Wednesday - D. and I had just picked up Sam from preschool and were driving back along the Dallas Rd. We decided to stop and take a look, as the tide was especially high (because of the full moon? I need to learn more about tides). It was quite a sight - the water was lapping at the wall and I was relieved to observe that the tent that had been parked there on our last few visits was gone. This is the beach we can walk to from our house - known to locals as Glass Beach for all the sea glass you can find there. It's true, there is quite a bit, though only little pieces, mostly green or brown with the occasional speck of blue glass- the children feel particularly lucky if they find any blue. So do I, really.
Not too much to update on as we settle deeper into normal routines - school and work during the week, trips to the library and the pool on weekends, although we did have a lovely brunch at a neighbour's house last weekend, and our first taste of the Victoria Symphony. I took the girls to the Royal Theatre to see the first concert in the children's series: a presentation of Raymond Briggs' The Snowman with the symphony playing the score, followed by Peter and the Wolf. They had activities before the show (the symphony's instrument petting zoo as well as a snowman craft, where I chatted with another mum from Sam's preschool. I was quite missing the random meetings that occur on the street or in the grocery store, but slowly it is beginning to happen here.)
I also wanted to report on the beautiful Remembrance Day ceremony held at the girls' school last Monday (the 11th is a statutory holiday here in B.C.), complete with a piper and honoured guests from the Armed Forces and Esquimalt Nation. It began with O Canada. (I think this is the second time I've sung the national anthem in that school. I have never, ever sung the national anthem in a school setting before. In fact, I was embarrassed to find that when it comes to singing it in French, I only know the half of the anthem that is sung before hockey games. The rest is fuzzy.) Alexandra and Lily have both joined the school choir so they sang a song about peace. All the classes presented a wreath, and the grade six children recited 'In Flanders Field' in English and French. It was a very moving ceremony, quite a contrast from the intercom announcement for the moment of silence I grew up with. On the 11th, Dylan took the girls to the cenotaph. I stayed home with Sam, who refused to get out of his pyjamas, and I chose not to battle with him partly because of the peaceful example I should be setting, but mainly because I knew he wouldn't keep silent for an entire minute. As another mother so eloquently put it "it's not the terrible twos, it's the f*%&ing fours". The boy really, truly knows how to throw a tantrum these days. A tantrum for a trifle. Take yesterday, for instance, as we were leaving the Y. He realized as he was going through the turnstile that he hadn't been given the opportunity, as he had on his way in, to swipe his membership card. "I NEED A TICKET. I. NEED. A. TICKET.", he howled and howled. As I calmly attempted to explain that we only need the "ticket" on the way in, he took it up a notch, sprawling on the floor in front of the turnstiles, repeating his mantra at the top of his lungs. The patient young woman who had been behind him finally stepped around him, looking down and saying "it's not the subway." I handed the soggy swimsuit bag over to Alex, picked up the flailing, screaming child and headed out to the car. But I needed to put him down to open the door. This is when he stepped onto the lawn beside us to continue his fit. I got the girls and the bag in the car and began to approach him when a I noticed a fresh, recently squashed dog turd directly in front of him. I yanked up his foot to confirm my suspicion. All over the bottom of his shoe. So I yanked the shoe off his foot, not wanting him to spread it everywhere with his still flailing limbs, and less calmly got him into his car seat. He continued to scream all the way home "STOP THIS CAR. I NEED A TICKET. LET ME OUT OF THIS CAR." His sisters were both trying to quiet him, telling him I was sure to crash (this is what I tell them when they are bickering in the back seat). Finally, as I was pulling up behind our house, he changed his tune to "I'M BLEEDING. I HAVE A BOBO." I swiveled around to discover a gash on the side of his foot. His bare foot because of the dog shit on his shoe, and because he had refused to put his socks on after the swim. His bare foot, which had been wildly kicking against the back of the passenger seat on our '88 rattly Chevy. A car that has a METAL ASHTRAY on the back of the passenger seat. Honestly. I wish I could make this stuff up. Lily ran into the house to get a bandaid while Alex raced into the studio to recount the episode to her father. I finally cleaned the hysterical boy up, calmed him down and said to Dylan "you can feed them KD for supper. I'm going to the grocery store". Wandering the grocery aisles on my own calms my nerves, and I made an impulse buy - a small container of 7-layer dip. Quite a discovery - this dip with refried beans, sour cream, guacamole, chopped tomatoes, shredded cheddar, chopped scallions and olives is a veritable meal in one. You've got all the food groups when you pair it with chips. I got home to find the children fed and quietly watching a video so I fixed myself a G & T and had lime tostitos and dip for supper. True story, but not one you will find on my food blog. For anyone wondering, Sam was fine. I, on the other hand tossed and turned for some time last night wondering when his last tetanus shot had been and whether it was possible that there was any rust on that stupid ashtray. FFFFF*&%ing Fours.


Happy Farmer said...

Goodness, how exciting !! Your snack, to top it off, sounds quite delicious.

Vicky said...

My sides are hurting from laughing so much. I too discovered that dip in a similarly needy monent. Real comfort food.