Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Quiet Time

I have to say this weekend felt even shorter than normal. I’m sure everyone will agree that weekends already feel short but this one was worse than usual. Maybe people without children still have “long weekends” but once you have kids your time becomes precious. Between home maintenance, weekly chores like laundry and grocery shopping, t-ball games, soccer games, dance recitals, quality time with the kids, and quality time with the wife there is very, very little personal quiet time left.

The problem is this wasn’t supposed to feel like a short weekend. It wasn’t supposed to be short because we managed to convince the grandparents to take the kids for a sleepover. That’s right, the GP’s were going to take the kids so that my wife and I could not only have quality time together when we weren’t already exhausted from a long day.

AND, the day was planned to maximize our time away from the kids. It included a bus tour of several local wineries and a quiet evening at home. By quiet evening at home, my wife and I agreed that quiet meant read a book in the same room, watching a movie together, or something in the same room which wouldn’t necessarily require talking.

The first sign of trouble occurred when I dropped the kids off at 8:30 AM Saturday. In conversation with the GP’s, they advised me they would be returning the kids by 9 AM Sunday. WHAT??? This means they would have the kids for exactly 24 hrs. I was hoping for at least noon so I could relax Sunday morning but that was now out. I had no worries because there was still plenty of quiet time available.

The second sign of trouble came when the bus broke down on the side of the highway. Have you ever seen a Greyhound bus on the side of the road and all the people piled out looking at it helplessly? Yep, that was me. BUT, There is a silver lining to this tale of woe. We had already completed the tour of the third vineyard so we were on our way home. Which means I got to taste all the wine I could handle AND the bus didn’t completely break down. The engine just overheated so we could drive for 3 minutes before stopping and letting the engine cool for 8 minutes before driving for another 3 minutes. I know these specific numbers because one of the people on the bus actually timed the duration. Needless to say, we got back to bus station at 7:30. To bad we were supposed to be home at 5:00! After that we went to dinner at the local Peruvian restaurant before heading home and straight to bed because we were exhausted from the day.

BUT, the whole point of this is that I spent TONS of quality time with my wife. LOTS and LOTS of quality time with her. I listened to her. I responded to all the questions she asked. I issued more than a “ugh, you right” caveman response. To be blunt, I did my time. Community service was over. It was me time.

AND, I decided to take that "me" time at 8:35 Sunday morning. It’s last 15 minutes before the kids come home (because the GP’s are always early) and all I wanted was some truly quiet time in my “private study”

BUT what happens… Wife decides we can spend the last 15 minutes having one final quality conversation! I didn’t want a quality conversation. I wanted to sit there in peace. I wanted to read the latest issue of "The Twelve" and enjoy the last few precious moments of silence that I had.


But, the wife was determined to have that one last conversation! I figured she wouldn't talk for more than 1 minute but I was wrong. She just kept going and going and going. So I tried to be ultra rude and just read anyway. But, she still didn't leave. She kept droning on.

Finally, I went to the final option. Defcon 4. I released the previous nights dinner. That's right, a big rush of extra spicy Peruvian food all at once. In case you wondering, spicy food plus me plus next morning equals "WOW dat don't smell like roses."

But, my wife was not deterred, she held her nose, and in a very nasaly voice, told if I was done making noise, we could finish our conversation. I knew I was beat so I put down my book, looked at her intently, and issued "Ugh, you right honey" at just right times.

But, if you're interested in what else I read during the week go here

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