Sunday Afternoon – Not in the Park

I was at the Flemington Jewish Community Center waiting to give a workshop on developing character. No one showed. No one except Husband and my friend. (She had to unlock the FJCC to let me in, so she was kind of wrangled into it, but I appreciate her just the same.) I’ve read and heard the stories a thousand times about an author who sat through a book signing and no one came except the homeless lady who wanted out of the cold and the chocolate. It’s funny, really. Well, funny for me, maybe not the author whose only visit was the homeless.

I thought I’d be totally bummed. But I’m not. So what no one came. My name ended up in the paper. Very cool. I was listed on MSN.com. Super cool. My mother has started a scrapbook for me. It can’t get much better than that.

And yet it does. Daughter goes to school and peddles my book! (She takes after her father the salesman.) My friends repost my links about my events. Love them for that. They “like” my posts and cheer me on. I’ve even sold a couple of books. Not too shabby.

Sunday afternoon was a total success. Can’t wait to do it again.

 

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Enter at Your Own Risk

I was at the food store Monday morning. Bright and early and without my kids. Do you shop on this day? I don’t typically go to the food store on Mondays so this was a new experience for me. I like to go bright and early on Saturday or Sunday. No one is in the store. There’s no jockeying for a place in the aisle, no guessing who’s cart is it anyway because someone is always abandoning their cart to find an item they forgot three aisles back. I never do that. Never. And frankly, I don’t like to bring my kids. Never have because when I do, I end up buying more junk than we need.Trolly Bays

Here’s what I saw this fine Monday morning: Moms with their babes. Everywhere. It was like all the moms of children five and under have a planned meeting to grocery shop at 9:00 am. One mom led her children up and down the aisles like momma duck leading her ducklings. The kids pushed the carts. Clever. We had moms with one in the carriage and one in the oven. Moms turning the grocery shopping into a math lesson. A couple of moms with those extra long carts that double as cars blocking the bakery section. Trying to get bagels over here. 

While checking out I heard, “Sweetie, we don’t give our money to the lottery machine.” the child replied, “But you give away your money to the grocery store.” Smart, I thought. Then the mother replied, “I don’t give away our money. I’m buying us food we need to eat.” She conveniently left out the part about needing to buy the three bottles of wine in the cart too. Not that there’s anything wrong with buying three bottles of wine on a Monday morning. The writer in me was just making an observation and of course writing a story.

What did I learn on this shopping expedition? Don’t go on Monday mornings. Too crowded and its like playing bumper cars, but trying not to hit the little people. Son, now 13, would be useful to have around. He can lift the case of water into the back of the car. (Shh. Don’t tell. I buy plastic.)

Taking the kids is about more than needing he-man strength. It’s about bonding. It wasn’t so long ago grocery shopping was my math lesson. Maybe next time I’ll take the kids.

You know the more I think about it, grocery shopping was also a contact sport when my son couldn’t have been more than seven ran face first into the shopping cart handle. Got a big black and blue from that one. And the time Daughter was two and some crazy old man with a cane told her he loved her. 

Take the kids? Yeah, right. Then it will be me who needs the wine.