Goodness, what a busy week- what with the magic of a public holiday stranded on a Wednesday (and thus equidistant from the convenience of the prior or post long weekend concept), racking up lots of lovely "Frequent Driver" miles shuttling between work in the midcoast and festivities downeast, wiping a miniature bottom, and the joyous art of keeping a roof over one's head by moving bits of paper around a desk and having unimplementable ideas. I must say I'm rather happy it is Friday.
I have had some new experiences this week. For the first time in my 12 year association with Bar Harbor, Maine I made it to the Rotary Club's pancake breakfast on the Fourth of July (ever the contrarian, I had an egg breakfast sandwich). Previously, I had always been too hungover, too busy preparing whatever awful 'float'* I was involved with for the parade, or refusing to dive into that thronging mass of humanity on principle. What a difference a 140 decibel fire alarm that can shit itself and wears a cute bonnet can make. I suppose I shall be sitting on a park bench at the athletic fields at half seven in the morning chewing a rubbery egg sarnie every Fourth of July going forward- things like this become 'family traditions'.
And speaking of the self-soiling fire alarm, I had no idea that a baby worn on the chest had such an effect on women. Admittedly, they were all women in their late sixties to early eighties wearing their best 'cruise-casual' vacation wear (wrap-around lighthouse print terrycloth cardigan, anyone?) but still! All it takes is a pair of feet sticking out the leg holes of the Baby Bjorn and these grannies go insane. Aside from the worryingly frequent statements along the lines of "I want to take her home with me" it is all rather good fun- never before have I been on the receiving end of such sustained approval by complete strangers for having it off with my wife.
On the subject of Country Mouse, I'd just like to note that until this past Wednesday she had never knelt in a gas station forecourt massaging sunblock into my lillywhite shins and calves while a constant stream of tourists filed by looking for a good vantage point to watch a parade. Everyone got to try something new.
Back on the road tomorrow to collect the family from Grammy and Grampy's compound. I have ambitions this weekend to take the canoe off the rack, paddle down the creek and out to sea, and drown some worms in an imitation of a fisherman. I'll let you know if I catch anything other than sunstroke. (Can one 'catch' sunstroke? Bit of round peggery in square holery there, I think).
*Float is an elastic term. One year; a stock car, a hippy drum circle in a pick-up truck, a rapper, and an Incan pan pipe band. Another; 48 VW Beetles of assorted vintage driving in formation.