Earlier this week, my mother took all three of my kids swimming. They left in the morning (after being sunblocked within an inch of their lives) and returned in the late afternoon with chlorine scented hair and drink cups from Sonic.
I had six hours to myself, a car with half a tank of gas, and twenty bucks to my name. Those are the ingredients that dreams are made of, gentle reader. So what did I do?
I leisurely browsed at a used bookstore and an education/art store. I loitered at the library in solitary splendor. I had a quiet lunch at Long John Silvers where I read a book and sipped lemonade and ate clam strips.
And the entire time no one spoke to me at all.
It was magical. No one whined in my ear and tugged on my sleeve. No one complained that their sibling was slurping too loudly. No one asked me a single question.
After my travels, I went back home to find that everything was exactly as I had left it earlier. There were no shoes thrown all over the floor, no new dishes in the sink, no toys scattered every few feet. Everything was, dare I say? Tidy.
So I curled up on our recliner and continued reading my book. After an hour or two I stretched, put the book down, and thought “I miss my kids a bit.”
Within five minutes my mother’s car had pulled in the driveway and my offspring were barging through the door alternately arguing with one another and telling me in painstaking detail everything they had done for the past six hours.
The quiet had fled and small piles full of swim goggles, flip flops, beach towels, and water wings appeared throughout the downstairs.
But I didn’t care.
I had six hours of peace, quiet, and order. And that was enough.
I’m curious, what would you have done gentle reader with six free hours, half a tank of gas, and twenty dollars? Share your ideas in the comments because at some point I’ll have a day off again and I’m looking for new ideas.