I'm still here, but for over a week our internet connection wasn't. Thanks to the evil that is Comcast, combined with my summer away from work, I've been cut off from the internet world. After calling to yell at a different Comcast employee in a different city every single day for the past week, I finally got someone to understand that our whole street was off-line, and apparently the problem is finally fixed. At least for now. Knock on wood.
I'm sure most of you have read Big Daddy's account of our crappy week, so I'll skip the recap. Suffice it to say that I spent a lot of time thinking of ways to get four kids out of our hot house during the warmest part of the afternoon. I was thankful for the overcast and slightly cooler weather that coincided with our AC outage, and even more thankful that I stopped the guy who sold us this house from taking out the attic fan (known to you northerners as a "whole house fan") as he was planning to do. It saved us this past week, especially at night, when it actually got quite cool in here.
The trials of the week from hell have also prompted me to reflect on and be thankful for my just-this-side-of-white-trash beginnings. Oddly enough, I've been reminded of a quote I once read by Dolly Parton, in which she said she was never afraid of losing all her money, because she knew how to be poor. I know exactly what she means. I'm not ashamed to say that one afternoon I raided the change jar to take the kids on a Slurpee run. Sure, it was in a late model Mazda minivan and not the back of my Daddy's yellow-primered El Camino (oh no, I am not speaking figuratively here), but it was a cold, cheap treat straight from the pages of my own childhood. Once when my Dad was laid off from the Firestone factory when I was ten years old,
he made up his mind that broke or not, we were going to do something fun, and I swear to Maude we rolled enough coin to take us all to Maywood. It was a stressful time for my family--my little brother was born right before my dad lost his job, and we had only been in our new suburban house for maybe two years. There was a recession on, we were driving a K Car, and things generally sucked, but my Dad realized that we all needed a treat, and he scrapped his way to making it happen. In the same spirit, Big Daddy responded to my general hot-and-crankiness the other night with a spontaneous suggestion that we all go to Baskin-Robbins. On the one hand, I knew we didn't need to be spending money on ice cream, but I also knew that at this point the $7.49 we spent is an insignificant drop in the bucket. And I loved him for it.