In Which I Learn To Fear “Excuse Me”
I had a foster kid visit me this weekend for respite care. R is 11 years old, and this was his second weekend with me. Saturday we braved the drizzle and overcast skies for a trip to visit Cunningham Falls.
By 11am that morning I realized that coffee was a requirement. Our first foray off the highway was entirely unfruitful.
Our second stop found us here.
Somehow I could not convey to the barrista that I required sugar free almond syrup in my latte. I ended up with a super-bitter latte-wanna-be which required three Splendas to be palatable.
Imagine my bitterness when this sign appeared at the VERY next exit:
Anyway. Moving on to the hike.
R had a great time exploring the tire playground.
We got an unexpected treat at the visitor center. There was an aviary with several large birds – owls, hawks, vultures. R had a question about one of the birds so we knocked on the door to ask the worker a question. Even though the visitor center was closed, the woman invited us inside the building and proceeded to give us a tour of every single animal inside! R’s favorite was the 45 pound snapping turtle.
My favorite was the barred owl.
We took the “challenging” course to the falls. It was only .75 miles, but it lived up to it’s description!
R took this picture of the falls:
We arrived home tired and ready for a quiet evening. It was then that I learned to fear “Excuse me.”
The first time was during his bath. I’m downstairs making dinner while R is washing off the hike. I hear a little voice call “Excuse me!” I think he says that sometimes because he forgets my name, and this is the best way for him to get my attention.
I run upstairs and ask what I can do to help. And of course there’s a tick on his leg. Which I have to kill. And then reassure him that he’ll be fine since the tick was on him for only a couple of hours. And did I mention that I had to kill the tick? All by myself?
Time #2: Bedtime. Lights out. I’m downstairs savoring the silence when it happens. “Excuse me!” I head up to his bed to hear this question: “Do you ever have mice in this house? Because I’m hearing a noise.” Well, as you can imagine, I’m a little sensitive about this topic. I lie in the bed with him to listen for the noise. I’m overjoyed to report it’s simply a zipper brushing up against the side of the dryer (we had to wash our potentially tick-infested clothes).
The third time I hear “Excuse me!” it’s because someone needs to complain about the volume of the dryer buzzer. To which I had to say suck it up. Because I can kill ticks and diagnose fake mouse noises, but I’ll be darned if I can figure out how to turn off the dryer buzzer.
Maybe I could if I’d had real coffee that morning. I blame you, Dunkin Donuts.