Monday, September 20, 2010

141. School Bus

So now Tall and Short are going to the same school. Tall is in first grade and Short is in half-day afternoon Preschool.

When we did the paperwork for Short's initial application and Miss Smythson called to let us know he was accepted into the program, we were very excited because we knew that Tall and Short would have the same basic schedule (as far as days off and holidays). This would simplify my life immeasurably.

"We are delighted to offer Short a spot in our program," she chirped with that sweet sing-song voice they all must learn in Teacher School.  Then, Miss Smythson added a simple caveat, almost an afterthought: “Just so you know, all children attending Crazy Town Preschool ride the school bus.”

I started to hyperventilate. I don’t have to drive him anymore?!? I don’t even technically have to get dressed if I don’t want to? (I should mention to you here that I have dedicated the past three years of my life to driving small people to various preschool classes and related activities.)

“Excuse me? Miss Smythson? What was that, could you repeat that? the part about the school bus?” I asked tentatively.

“The kids ride the bus; it's included in the special fees check you wrote,” she said nonchalantly.  I could almost hear her shrugging through the phone, as if to say, Bus? who cares, what difference does that make?     

It was such a beautiful sentence the-kids-ride-the-bus the-kids-ride-the-bus the-kids-ride-the-bus. I started whispering it to myself, like a mantra.  I wanted to roll the words around in my mouth over and over forever and never have them disappear, like the last Godiva chocolate in the box.  Although she was only a voice on the phone, Miss Smythson was my New Best Friend. I felt like she had called to tell me that I won 10 million dollars in the lottery when I didn’t even remember buying a ticket.

The. Bus. Picks. Him. Up. Truly, it is reminiscent of a private limousine service. I was a bit unclear on the whole tipping concept, however. Do I tip every day? Twice a day? Is a dollar enough? The Husband told me I was being ridiculous, that it was a public school after all; he said to just give her $10 at the end of the week.

No one was more thrilled about this latest development of a yellow bus stopping at our house twice a day as Short himself. He has a new adult to give back-seat driving directions to.

("Mantra Of Vitality")

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