Friday, November 1, 2013

News from the Home Front

Last Saturday afternoon the kids and I accompanied, Dragonwife, my lovely spouse, to Columbia International Airport so she could begin what would be a week-long business trip to Geneva, Switzerland. Unlike many airports Columbia's is actually a pleasant place to visit. Skylights in the roof provide a fantastic amount of natural sunlight, there are scores of places to sit including old fashioned wood rocking chairs along with plenty of plants scattered about to add some green to the surroundings. While I was okay with staying longer the kids wanted to go home to their respective activities while Dragonwife was eager to get the TSA security checks done and cross over to the section of the airport only passengers can go.

“You really need to get the kids home,” Dragonwife said absentmindedly while digging through her shoulder bag, “plus, I don't want you paying the short term parking fee.”

“Whatever,” I responded feeling slightly ticked that I was the only one of the four of us feeling any warm fuzzys at her getting ready to travel across a significant portion of the planet. So, with nothing left to say I turned and started heading for the exit hoping my kids, my eighteen-year old son and eleven-year old daughter, who were already way ahead, remembered to look both ways before crossing the street going towards the parking garage.

So with one last glance as my wife was scanned down to her bone marrow and felt up by some unisex TSA official I headed out the door feeling the last four of five months of her scrambling to get ready for this trip had ended rather anticlimactically. All things considered it didn't matter much to me since both simple duty and common sense required that I take a week off from work to watch over my kids. Even though Spoilboy is a semi-responsible kid, I just could not fathom leaving them at the alone house while I go do my usual night shift routine.

During the buildup she and I had debated on which one of us would be pulling the toughest duty. She made her case saying it was a business trip and I responded saying yes, in Geneva, Switzerland. I would then mention my National Guard summer camps that were always business along with being in either an alligator infested swamp or some hot and dry desert. Contrary to the nifty and sleek television commercials depicting awesome adventure training my summer camps in the peacetime National Guard were usually less exciting than watching grass grow or paint drying. Now there were the few exceptions when some anal retentive officer, desperate to gain favor with the active duty types, volunteered us for every crap detail under the sun.

Even if I understood the complicated details of my wife's tax attorney profession I could not reveal anything since in all respects it would certainly mean the forfeiture of vital and sensitive parts of my male anatomy. However, I can write that her previous business trips were always in far nicer locations than I could have dreamed compared to places where I regularly removed engorged ticks or cleaned out coarse desert sand from those same sensitive male areas.

During these last several days I have stopped my son from trying to sneak a girl into his room. Made sure my daughter brought a real lunch to school instead of attempting to stuff a bag of frosted flakes cereal into her backpack. Insured that the dogs and cat had fresh food and clean water everyday despite the fact those duties belong to the kids. This list could go on but lets just say they kept me busy and leave it at that.

Along with keeping the two Sith Lords honest I had the normal duties of making sure the house stayed reasonably clean, the refrigerator doors were kept closed, the front door was locked at night, and that a mountain of laundry did not grow so high as to touch the ceiling. In short, while I did not delve deeply into the “honey-do” list left by Dragonwife I stayed consistently busy during her absence, not that I will get any credit for it. Several times during this past week while in the middle of some mundane chore I had a chance to reflect on the irony of the current situation. While I love to leave the house and the curiously inbred little town I find myself marooned by wife is very much the homebody. That she travels quite a lot lately doesn't bother me at all, I'm proud of her intelligence and abilities. But what does bugs the living shit out of me is that every time I plan a short escape something always comes up. It's a small recompense but at least she is suppose to bring me a t-shirt from the famous CERN Large Hadron Collider located in Geneva. What can I say, it appeals to the SheldonCooper/science nerd/total geek side of me. However I am getting a little nervous since what happened yesterday.

While I was getting a jump on the weekend bedsheets and blanket washing Thursday afternoon I heard the obnoxious squealing brakes of the FedEx truck that goes through the neighborhood. At first I figured the delivery dude was just dropping off stuff to the angry troll across the street, he works at home and rarely leaves. But instead delivery dude came to my door carrying two medium-sized packages. Both were sent from Switzerland by my wife with each of the boxes addressed to one of the kids.

When the kids got home from school we opened them and discovered a beautiful coo coo clock for my daughter, Darth Wiggles. My son, Darth Spoilboy, had several things in his box namely a fancy Swiss army knife, a nice leather toiletry bag, and a sweatshirt with some sort of emblem on the front. But no, nothing from CERN for the hardworking dad who did his duty and made sure the house was still standing and the kids stayed out of jail.

An oversight? I surely hope so, or papa is going to be pissed.


Akelamalu said...

She's saving the best (yours) til she gets home! Prepare yourself. LOL

Pearl said...

You're probably in for a surprise. :-)


Mr. Charleston said...

Sounds to me like the perfect time to take a couple of days at the beach, drink margaritas and let the chips fall where they may.

Pixel Peeper said...

Let's hope it's a matter of your T-shirt fitting into her suitcase while your kids' things were too large and had to be shipped.

Did you ever wonder during your week how single parents handle this all the time?

And I agree with you on the Columbia airport - I loved those white rocking chairs!

Rose L said...

Gee, I bet something really special will be personally delivered to you for your hard work...wink wink!!!

Marja said...

Lol you did a fantastic job and your wife going all the way to Geneva It is really beautiful there, a week being far too short.
Your time will come to receive and to travel :)

lime said...

it is a bummer to have your own escape plans canceled. i'm going to go the optimistic route with akelamalu and pearl and assume you'll be rewarded upon her return. fingers crossed for you.

okjimm said...

ok... doan know why... but it made me think of a joke...
Ole is getting ready to celebrate his 50th Anniversary and Sven says, “Vhat are you going to do for your anniversary?”

Ole says “Vell, for my 20th anniversary I took Lena to Norvay.”

Sven says, “Dats nice, so vhat are you going to do to top dat?”

Ole says, “I tink I’ll go pick her up.”

.....maybe she is waiting for you to go pick her up, see

The Bug said...

Ha! That's a mama for you :)

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

I'm sure that nifty tee shirt is already tucked neatly into her suitcase. No way she'd forget something THAT important and cool. (Post a picture of it on your blog!)