Friday, November 22, 2013

G is for gallop

How many times have I made you listen to stories about daycare pickup and dropoff? Not nearly enough, right? Listen, my friends, and you shall hear / of the 6pm ride of Robin dear.

My work building isn't visible from the road. You have to climb a long driveway through the remains of a forest and then the building appears on the left, beginning with the daycare entrance, while a parking garage appears on the right. The building continues on and on (forever, really; my office is at the very end and it's a five-minute walk at least from the front door) and past the end of the parking garage is a traffic circle and finally, the main entrance to the building. For one zillion years (seven), I drove up the driveway, around the circle, back down the driveway, and parked in the little pull-off area in front of the daycare entrance.

First I did so because I had a tiny baby and I didn't want to haul her carseat or stroller from the garage, and I didn't want to carry her in my arms along with all her things and mine. Then I did it because I was hauling two children, then three, then still two, and you know how I wished for my own sherpa, but she never came. (My sherpa is a friendly, nurturing fairy godmother type, all round and benevolent and waving a magic wand filled with Carrying Things and Cleaning Things magics; isn't yours?)

Then in an inspiration designed to distract G from his loneliness after L left the two of us for kindergarten, I began parking in the garage. Every morning G gets to pick which level we park on and if we should try to get a spot close to the stairs or the elevator. Now that he's just one (self-ambulating) human, it doesn't really take longer to walk him in from the garage than it would to park by daycare but have to move my car again after dropping him off.

All of this is to tell you that we have to walk back to the car at the end of the day. My colleagues are, as a lot, mostly morning people, on average both arriving to and leaving from work far earlier than I. So as we walk to our car each night we cross a mostly empty parking deck. G has wide open spaces and he has claimed them all.

For most of this month, it has been his habit not to walk to the car. Rather he alternates between "skipping" and "galloping," though neither is the movement you're thinking of in your brain of narrow definitions. He seems to have this...pair of steps, we'll call it, that's nearly symmetrical, and "skipping" is that step led with the left foot and "galloping" is that same step led with the right foot.

It comes with a melody, of course, that he chants as he swerves his hips.

...I'm skipping and I'm galloping. I'm skipping and I'm galloping. I'm skipping and I'm galloping....

There is always at least one colleague or two who sees us, because of course there is. So basically the way I close out each work day is by entertaining a professional contact with how G does the Running Man, all while acting nonchalant about his fly moves across federal property.

Have a good weekend, friends.

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