Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Why I'm sitting here eating yogurt out of the carton. . .

One of my favorite songs is "Reasons Why" by Nickel Creek (my favorite group ever). Part of the song says "Others have excuses, I have my reasons why."

These are my reasons why. No excuses.

This is Sarah. She's sweet and cute and a bit shy and rather keen on dancing ballet. Unfortunately, her ballet shoes (lovely hand me downs from her sister) are in a box, in a crate, in a sea can, on a container ship, somewhere between Seattle and Brisbane. A box which I might add was supposed to arrive in October, 6-8 weeks after being packed in August, but which will now be arriving sometime near the end of December, if we're lucky - probably January because everyone takes Christmas as a holiday, and our shipment still has to pass customs, which could take an extra month. (I miss my stuff.)
Well, Sarah is taking ballet and she happens to have a recital coming up in a couple weeks, so she needs her shoes. With nothing to do but laundry and with my little guy watching the Upside Down Show (best Aussie kids show ever) I thought today would be a great day to hunt down a pair of ballet shoes and some pink tights. Did a little research: two shops sell ballet shoes near by - one 45 minutes north of us, another down the road in Fortitude Valley (a trendy shopping area just a couple km's away). I opted for Fortitude Valley. I called the shop and got the cross streets and plugged it in so "Bruce" (my GPS) could do the work. Only he got a little confused, and knowing that parking is difficult to find, and thinking I was close to the shop, I pulled into a parking garage that said "parking from $3". The closest spot was on level 5, and a tight squeeze for our Mitsubishi Pajero. (Never heard of a Pajero? It's because they don't exist in the US.) I happened to notice they only take coins to pay for parking, which made me nervous because all I had was a $50 bill - a rarity for me since I technically don't have a bank account here (long story), so first item of business was getting change. It's lunch time, so I thought I'd grab a slice of pizza for Caleb and head over to the store. Caleb pointed to a slice and I bought it. He freaked. He didn't want the pizza (which I now realize has pineapple - he hates), he wanted the sausage roll on a stick (which I wouldn't buy anyway), so I'm stuck with the task of eating the pizza (which wasn't in my calorie (er Kilojoule) budget today). I end up picking up the crying toddler and heading toward where I think the store is.

After looking around a while I finally ask directions and hear that the shop is 20 min's walk down the road. Wondering if I would be able to find another parking space, I opt to walk, but now Caleb is asleep on my shoulder. Did I mention that he weighs approximately 20 kilos. My shoulder is falling off and my shoes are rubbing wrong, and it's hot. I would have worn shorts, but I fell down while climbing the stairs at Ascot State School yesterday (thank you to the Sheila in the 4 inch heels who ran over to pick me up) and now I have a black and blue knee which isn't particularly attractive - so I'm wearing long pants, and a large bandaid. There, tucked between the Mercedes and Mazaradi dealership is the trendy shopping center.

After asking two more people for directions I find my ballet shop. I tell the lady at the counter what I'm looking for. After translating twice in my head I realize that she has said that I really aught to bring my daughter in to have her shoes fitted as they come in 4 different widths. Couldn't I bring her back another day? Did I mention that shops here close at 5 on the dot. Every one. Some grocery stores stay open until 8, but everything else is done at 5. No, I really can't come back another day. So I estimate her width and get her a pair and some pink tights (total $79! blink blink), and haul my heavy toddler back to the parking garage, all the while eyeing the open parking spaces on the street. By this time, my heels are bleeding from my unwise shoe choice, and the hair which I blowed dry and straight this morning has become "Hermione hair" (as my friend Jennifer would say), and I am dripping in sweat. Australian deodorant is not made for Americans.

I go to the ticket booth in the Car Park, and find that I owe $15! I was gone just over an hour! I have to do a 15 point turn to get my car out of the tiny space. It takes 3 wrong turns for "Bruce" to get me headed in the right direction and I'm home. What is there to do on a day like this but put a little ice on my aching heels and eat a bowl of "moose tracks" ice cream. Mint chocolate chip would even do! Unfortunately, my body thinks it's time to store up for winter, when really, it's just come season for putting on swimmers (togs, cozy, whatever you say). That means, no ice cream. So yogurt it is, only I haven't run the dish washer yet, so all the bowls are dirty.

I'm eating yogurt out of the carton.

These are my reasons why. Long story.

I think I'll just stay home tomorrow and iron pleats.


Anthony and Kristie said...

To bad you cant eat ice cream, I think it would help your bleeding heels heal faster, and maybe even make the boat go faster so you get your stuff before christmas.

Kimberly said...

Juli you are hil-ar-ious! I'm still laughing. I think you should write a book. Or at least blog more often. Good job choosing yogart--you can do it!

And by the way--did the ballet shoes fit?

Juli said...

The shoes fit. Thank goodness. Fortitude Valley left a bad taste in my mouth.

Emily said...

Juli! That was a great story! You earned that pizza and ice cream!

Julie said...

I want to laugh but at the same time cry because those days are just soooo exhausting and your story was just too vivid!!! I am glad the shoes fit!

Kendra said...

Juli, you are so good. Moose tracks would totally be excusable in this situation. I'm proud of you!

Angie said...

Thanks for sharing. Great story. You are a good mom. Enjoy your yogurt.