Monday, December 05, 2005

Pa Rum Pum Pum Pum

The Infant is teething, which means I get to revisit crossword puzzles at 2 am. When that doesn't work, I play Pharoah, a city building game by Sierra. The Infant is either sleeping or fussing, and with this in mind, I foolishly went Christmas shopping. Off island. When snow was forecast.

Sis and I loaded up her minivan and went up island as snow began to fall. "It's not sticking," we mutually reassured each other. Indeed, it wasn't sticking and we did just fine. Until my niece got motion sick and vomited on herself. We pulled over at the next gas station and hey presto 7 minutes later she was clean, changed and we were back on the road. 3 minutes after that the predictable complaint: "I'm hungry!" chorused from the back seats. So we headed to the buffet (or in Muralist parlance "buffalo") and the children picked and nibbled and hoovered and gummed. The Infant, alert and remarkably cheery, went to work on a garlic breadstick off the pasta bar. All was right in the world; Sis and I felt it opportune to go to the shops with contented children.

To the craft store we went, the children were impressed by the array of glueable and sparkling products. We were all greatly cheered by the display of trees and decorations, which cons mothers of three into forgetting they are not clones of Martha Stewart. As I stood pondering the aesthetics of shiny versus frosted faux cranberries in Christmas decor, the Infant snuffled in a quiet sniff that communicated DOOM. Tears glistening in her eyes, she yakked up lunch. Even the scent of cinnamon scented pine cones and eucalyptus were not enough to mask to odor of garlic bread and bananas wafting to the nostrils. As I rushed to the bathroom, Bing crooned "pa rum pum pum pum"; each sinister "pum" coinciding with a new profusion of regurgitation.

Fortunately, the Infant's quilted jacket soaked up enough effluvia that her seat remained slime free. I dressed the Infant in spare clothes and stood grimly rinsing garments in the sink, Bing still "pa rum pum pumming" in the background. Infant slept peacefully.

The remainder of our trip was problem free, and did yield a priceless quote from the Muralist. As we drove over Deception Pass Bridge on the way home the Muralist paused in her dialouge with her cousin and looked at the falling snow.

"Nope," said she decisively, "Santa's not there yet."

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