Sunday, June 3, 2012

The long road home

Alison goes to her summer day camp this year and she'll start out her adventure with Jenna. We decided to get an early start by meeting up with Team Tokash at Huddles, a frozen yogurt shop that is sort of half-way between our houses along the Monon Trail. The Tokashes come west. We go north. It's about a four-mile trek, so easily doable. As we left, I practiced a little speech I was going to give to Jenna. I wanted her to pledge to me that there would be no spraining or breaking of bones, no blood and no vomit this time. If she didn't agree to my terms, I was going to send her pedaling home. (Like that would have really happened...) She apparently heard my vibe, though, and crashed, instead, just a few blocks from her house along 86th Street. Thankfully, Drew was along, and he stayed with Jenna while Amer made a stop at the local Walgreens for medical supplies. We'd gotten the message of the delay and Alison had climbed a tree to look for the wounded party.
At this point we didn't know for sure who had fallen, but we had a pretty good idea. Drew is an accomplished ice skater and it was too early for Amy to be drinking so we were sure they'd stayed upright. Sure enough, it was Jenna who arrived bloody but bandaged, and Huddles cures all ills. So after a chat between the moms and a little catching up with Drew, my little part of three started off home. I took us all afternoon to get down the trail because Ali and Jen had more muscle power in their jaws than their lower extremities. They also had to stop to, "Aw!" at the 7.6 million dogs that parade along the Monon Trail, discuss their love life (interrupted by the summer for one of them because "long distance relationships just never work out.") "Oh! look at the poodle!"
"Aw, it's a Scottie. It's so cute!" Halfway home, we had to stop for a breather to examine the river. And try to spit at specific spots below (them, not me) and discuss "The Avengers." "Hey, Ali, Do you ever wonder why, when the Incredible Hulk gets bigger, his shirts rips off but his pants stay on?" "No. But I'm glad they do." "I know, right!" "Oh, look at the doggie! It's so cute!" Back on the bikes, approaching the Broad Ripple Ice Cream Store. "Hey Mom, can we stop at Brics? "You just had Huddles." "Oh yeah." We get through Broad Ripple. "Aw! Look at the chocolate lab!" They stop to pet the dog, who turns out to be named Charlie. "Like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory!" "Right. That's how we named him." "That's so much better than Augustus (Gloop.)" "I know, right?!" Back on the bikes. We turn the corner to the house. "Look, Miss Cheryl! No crashes!" "Hurrah! Let's keep it that way," I say. "Hey, who's at your house?" "That's our new car." "Cool! Have you got to ride in it?" "Yeah. It's fun. You put the top down and go real fast, but it's safe and it whips your hair!" It WAS a long ride home. But it was a great time. I love listening to them. And, as Alison reminded me, at a slower speed, you don't miss the cute little chipmunks or the pretty birds. You also don't whip your hair. I'm about to take them on an errand run with me, so we'll take care of that. Today, there's time enough for both.

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