Monday, July 23, 2007

Heading Home

It's pouring in New York City today. And how do I know that? I know that because last week I completely gave up on the idea of everything related to Cape Cod, summer and vacation.

I want to go home.

On Thursday morning, I packed up a month's worth of supplies and clothes and cleaned up a month's worth of mess in record time. By 11 a.m. we was on the road headed South.

But as much as I wanted to be home, I wasn't really ready for the marathon drive. And the kids wanted to see Uncle Patrick. And Uncle Patrick wanted to see Buffy the Wonder Puppy. So we decided to spend a very long weekend in New York.

I'm more than glad that we decided to stop here. I was stressed about parking the van, but after one night in a garage (and a fifty dollar hole in my pocket) I worked it like a real New Yorker and staked out a spot on the street in front of Patrick's apartment.

The kids love Uncle Patrick so much. I know it helps ease their Daddy pangs just the smallest bit to have a man around. Not much though. They're still making their periodic "I miss Daddy" announcements. I actually think it is good, both that they miss him so much and that they are able to express it.

Patrick has been a great host. On Friday evening, he suggested we go to the Harry Potter Place street fair-type thing they were having in front of the Scholastic Store. Seeing as I've only read the first three books and the kids are too scared to read any of the books or see the movies, I wasn't sure how interested they would be.

But Uncle Patrick hit a home run with that one. They loved it! Now I suppose I'll have to keep reading the books.

On Saturday, Patrick had a race to run, so we signed the kids up for the kids' races scheduled after his easy four-mile jaunt.

The kids loved that too! I was so proud of them. My son moved up an age group since November, but he was able to keep up with the pack. After my daughter's emotional ending during last November's race, I was a little worried about her this time. She could have been dead last, but as long as she didn't cry I would have been happy. But she kept up with the pack (or at least the back half of it) too. And she didn't cry at all. She was all about the intensity.

They have both declared that they love racing and I am determined to keep them going with it. With soccer starting soon, and swimming classes starting again, I'll have them whipped back into shape in no time.

On Saturday afternoon, Uncle Patrick had another crazy idea. He wanted to take the kids to Coney Island, especially since the majority of it will close after this season. My daughter was heartbroken that she was too short to ride the Cyclone, but she quickly recovered.

Do you have any idea how expensive the rides are at Coney Island?

I told the kids they could each pick two rides. They picked the log ride and the Tilt-a-Whirl. They didn't complain a bit about only being able to go on two rides, so I surprised them each with one more ticket for a kiddie ride. They chose the kiddie coaster.

Uncle Patrick and I thought the subway ride back took forever, but that was my son's favorite part of the day. He loves the subway, no matter what.

Yesterday we spent the day in Central Park letting the kids do pretty much whatever that wanted, including getting their clothes soaking wet in the water playground. And today they got soaking wet just walking to the luncheonette, poor things.

I wonder if Patrick has any idea how wonderful he is with kids, or at least my kids. I know it must be hard for my husband to hear all of these stories about his children having fun and bonding with another man. But knowing my husband, he's just happy that they have more love in their lives.

Part of me wishes I didn't have to leave here in the morning. But we need to get home for so many reasons. I wish I could take Patrick with me. I wish we lived closer to each other. I wish I could afford a private jet to whisk us back and forth as often as we liked. I wish a lot of things, none of which can ever come true.

But mostly right now I wish I was home again, with my life back to normal and my husband safely with me. Until that can happen, I'm thankful that I have friends who are family who can help us through it all.

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