Tickle Me Pink

The girls were edgy today.  

They slept in a bit so their energy tanks were full.  

Their request to watch a movie this morning with breakfast on the couch was worthwhile until they went from enthralled to bored in .2 seconds.

And then the bouncing.

And then the fighting.

And then the persistent questions asking that thing that was already answered. 

We tried playing outside.  We tried coming back in.  We tried snacking.  We tried toy ponies and getting the old crutches down but only one was found and so that wasn’t cool enough … and we eventually decided to go out and pick our pumpkins at nearby Peltzer Farms.  Ponies were ridden while roosters pecked the ground for food and the gold tipped corn maizes glistened in the midday sun . They ran around while I marveled in the fact that I could see them without having to chase them anymore.  They would find their way back to me.  And they did.

Against my better judgement I decided to take them on a couple of errands, for shampoo that was needed, and a new hook system for their bath towels that always end up on the floor.  Which doesn’t seem to bother anyone quite as much as it bothers the one picking them up constantly.  That one would be neither of my daughters.

And in good judgement I decided it wasn’t worth making dinner at home when we could go to my new favorite spot, rather cheaply because they could split a sandwich while I could ponder the idea of having a good beer along with mine. 

I sat across from the two of them as they giggled and whispered about how our waiter blinked (winked) at them.  Their energy still untamed I found myself asking them too often to sit down in the middle of their chairs so they wouldn’t tip, not to play with their straws, not to point to the boy with cool shoes out the window (what does this really mean?) while filtering questions about what else we have planned for the day (uh, nothing).  I saw my oldest show my youngest how to flirt and I nearly spit my beer.  It was as if I were the audience and they were the show, and I wasn’t quite sure how I was feeling about it all.  They mentioned that it wasn't the same going out to dinner without Daddy (true) and how they even miss his farts.  They argued over ear space and elbow room and I teetered between giving them the “mom look” (as they call it) and sipping on my BooKoo beer — attempting to relax a bit in spite of it all. 

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They did marvelously sharing their turkey sandwich. 

Against my better judgement, I let them have some dessert.  Their behavior, after all, was not necessarily dessert-worthy.  But, I may have earned some ‘cool Mom points’, even if they weren’t awarded verbally.  I’ll take the clean plate and the quiet that occurred during its demolishing as my reward.

Against my better judgement I gave into their request to walk around Old Town.  It was still an hour and a half away from their bedtime.  Which could either feel really close or really far away, but it was a perfect temperature and it had been a thought I had myself, so I agreed to walk around the block.  

The night life was more than what I expected on a Sunday Night.  The girls were oblivious as they found stairs to run up and ramps to bring them down; they pointed out that the side rails looked like gymnastic bars while threatening half-heartedly to try a spin.  They looked in every restaurant, they stared at every passerby.  

Then we came to a wine bar where live music was being played, and they stopped at the doorway to look in.  It was a man and a woman playing guitar to spanish-style music, and it certainly caught our attention.  I watched the girls stiffen up a bit as the duo came toward us.  The girls found my side, looking up at me while the musicians jammed … just for us on the small restaurant-front patio.  Eventually the girls relaxed and stood on their own, half wanting to dance, half wanting to simply watch how they made that sound come from those instruments.  The duo asked the girls how old they were and struck up a conversation all the while playing to each other as they walked in an orchestrated circle.  The melody ramped up a bit and the female guitarist started adding percussion and harmonies as the pace picked up.  We were mesmerized and surely taking the restaurant’s entertainment away, but in my better judgement, I simply let it all take place.  

It ended in one energetic strum, I was quicker than I realized I would be to applaud, yet the applause from the restaurant quickly overtook mine.  The girls, unaccustomed to this courtesy, followed my lead and the duo smiled, waved, and headed back inside.  

We walked away with a new pep in our step and talked about how people do that for a living, which felt like a much better conversation than the one we had [stumbled through] earlier about the two women behind us standing in line at Target who joked to each other “I swear we aren’t strippers” yet left little to be argued by the statement their attire was making.  

"Yes, honey, you can be a musician when you get older, and play just like she did in a nice modest, self-respecting black suit and not-too-high heels."  

“Look at how bright the moon is, Mom!” said my youngest.  She was so right.  

In my better judgement I let them pick the music as we drove through Old Town toward home, sunroof open, windows down, music blaring to “Tickle Me Pink" by Johnny Flynn.  Lyrics which I’m sure they don’t understand (it’s a catchy tune, I swear) and which may be against my better judgement to allow them to sing along to.  But ya know … ? … I kinda told my judgement to screw off tonight and it resulted in giving us the best part of our day.  

 

… Pray for the people inside your head

For they won't be there when you're dead

Muffled out and pushed back down

Pushed back through the leafy ground ...


Tickle Me Pink, Johnny Flynn






 © Houseman 2013