All in all, a fairly quiet day was had. I slept in to, wow, almost 7:00 a.m., as I’ve lost the ability to slumber for longer than two hours continually, it seems.
Watched live Barclays Premier League Soccer before taking Daughter Number Two to her regularly scheduled flute lesson every Saturday.
And that’s where it began.
For better or worse, Daughter Number Two (DNT) and I usually arrive for flute a little bit early, so that Dad can grab a coffee and she can attempt to eat most of whatever breakfast pastry I purchase. Before you get the impression that it’s a heart-warming chance for Father and Daughter to chat, complete crossword puzzles, and create stick figures together from wooden stirrers, it’s not.
Oh, we enjoy the time together, but DNT is usually buried in one of her omnipresent books, and I scan CraigsList for my latest potential automotive acquisition.
But it’s still fun, and I think she’ll remember Saturday mornings with me when she’s a grandmother decades from now, but it may be along the lines of, “Gee, I wish my Dad and I talked more when I was little.”
Still, I figure I’ll be high-fiving a million angels if I get some kind of honorable mention from her in the future. If not, maybe I can look into the whole “haunting thing,” though there are a number of other targets I would much rather frequent in that area.
This morning while I was ordering the coffee and scone, DNT grabbed a chair at the counter that faced the picture window. There were just a couple of seats either side of her, and I planned to take one of them. Then I noticed a Mom with two daughters showing a distinct interest in where DNT was sitting.
The place was crowded, and there wasn’t much available room.
Yep, they were definitely eyeing DNT’s chair, and it looked like they were maneuvering to ask her to move so they could all three sit down.
“I can’t believe this,” I thought. They’re going to try to edge her out.
And then the Mom leaned down to say something to DNT. Her two daughters closed in expectantly.
Okay, she was crossing the line now. I simply could not believe she was going to ask my Little Eleven Year Old to give up her seat. My responsibility as a Father kicked in, and I approached the Mom.
“I’m sorry. I’m going to be sitting next there next to my daughter.”
Who do you think you are? I said to myself.
Well, she just smiled at me and said, “Oh, we were all just fascinated with what your Daughter was drawing. What is that?”
Of course, the entire time DNT was completely oblivious to the drama unfolding around her. She was busy patiently waiting for her breakfast treat while focussed on her book.
“Her what? Oh, that’s a connect the dot workbook, I guess,” I said.
“I haven’t seen one since I was a little girl, and my daughters were really interested. It’s very cool.”
“Um, yeah, it’s pretty cool. Thanks,” I replied.
“You two have a good morning,” and she walked away with her kids.
“If you’d like, we can move,” I offered. I was going to try to save this.
“No, that’s fine,” she offerred. “We’re okay.”
I’m an idiot, of course, negatively interpreting what was happening in front of me. At least they were very nice about it, and I took my seat, carefully tucking my tail between my legs.
I experienced a couple of other near incidents later in the day when someone cut me off in traffic, or took the parking space I was angling for, or nonchalantly (and accidentally) crowded me in a restaurant.
And though my first instinct was to take offense, make a face, and express general displeasure, my second was to think of the Mom’s reaction to me earlier in the morning.
In the end, I just chilled out, slowed down, found another space, and discreetly listened to whatever the folks at the table next to us at the restaurant were discussing. I internally adopted my “pretend Jamaican” persona (no worries, mon), and also made sure that my Spouse and DNT ate most of my cheesecake dessert.
As Daughter would say, “Namaste.”
Now the only thing left for me to do is google “Namaste” because I have no idea what it really means.