Yesterday our little family took a little day trip to the Bay Area for a conference for Anthony’s work, a mistake we are not going to make again. We knew traveling with a toddler was going to have its rough moments, but we didn’t suspect that the majority of the trip was going to be one constant aggravation after another.
Anthony and I did invent a great new game to play on road trips. It’s called ‘Gang Initiation.’ Basically one person thinks of a task that the other person must do to be in their gang. The point is not to do the suggested action, of course, because there is no actual gang. The point is to out-ridiculous the other person. It goes something like this:
Me: “For your Gang Initiation you have to… spray paint over the Keyes freeway sign and change the name to ‘Butt Town.'”
Anthony’s initiations were always way harder:
Anthony: “For your Gang Initiation you need to… come up with a lasting solution to peace in the Middle East.”
It’s hours of fun, even with a baby fussing in the background.
There were a few bright spots in the day, such as when we found a little patio to wander around on, but most of our time was spent not learning from the conference but basically preventing Isobel from getting into something or doing something dangerous.
We thought it over and we really couldn’t have done anything differently. We handled the situation as best as we could and we prepared for it as much as possible. It just wasn’t a toddler-friendly environment. Had she been younger and not mobile, she would have been content. Had she been older and able to play independently with the many other children there, she would have had a ball. As it was she is too young to play on her own and too old to be interested in sitting and playing with toys.
Pretty much all the activities she was interested in around her were dangerous. Anthony and I often talk about how suicide-prone babies are and how supervising her pretty much involves us trying to prevent her from killing herself. Angela said that being a parent was like playing and endless game of lemmings, which sums it up perfectly.
We left early, got ice cream, and went home. When we got home we unplugged with a couple hours of Heroes and afterward we were recovered enough to go out and see our friends play a show at Borders. Stefalynda played one of its last shows ever because soon Stefanie is moving to Reno to get her doctorate. I took some photos of Isobel ‘playing’ piano with Stefanie.
She loved it so much that when we were done she spent the remaining time at Borders tugging on Stef’s pants and saying ‘up.’ It’s hard not to indulge her.
My friends and I have a running joke that some jazz music sounds like they just gave a bunch of instruments to babies and let them have at it, so I guess this was not too far off.