Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Elevating the Phrase "Sucky Day" to a Whole New Level

I had a crappy day yesterday. The day dawned gray and gloomy, I was stressed about bills, feeling guilty for not exercising, making bad food choices, and doing laundry - the morning was not what you'd call rewarding.

The afternoon picked up the theme of the day (sucktastic) and ran with it. I picked up two cranky kids from school and rushed them through homework and The World's Most Random All-Leftover Dinner, so I could get Bug to the sitter's, Bear to her dance class, and meet Tom at the junior high's open house. Then the whole thing in reverse: grabbing Bug from the sitter and Bear from dance. Everybody got to bed late, promising me an fun-filled time trying to get them up for school the next morning.

By the time I flopped into bed, I was mostly at peace with the fact that this had been an irredeemable day. Other than fifteen minutes spent with a perfectly delightful cup of pumpkin spice coffee, it had been a total loss. But at least it was over.

Or so I thought. (Ominous music)

I cracked the window above the bed to let in a trickle of deliciously cool night air and snuggled under my favorite quilt. My pillow was perfectly plump and cool under my cheek. Things were looking up.

I closed my eyes and savored the quiet house. Breathing deeply, I felt the weight of the day lifting off of me.

Except ... well, I actually couldn't breathe that deeply. I tried to relax my body and concentrate on breathing slowly and evenly. No, darn it, there was definite wheezing. Stupid asthma.

Without rolling over, I flopped one arm over to the nightstand and fumbled around for my inhaler. With a practiced gesture, I flipped the cap off and took a quick hit off of it. As I sucked in, I felt something hit my tongue.

Weird. It feels almost like ... lettuce ... or wet tissue. What on earth?

I spat the something into my hand and turned on the light. Without my glasses, all I could tell was that the thing on my hand was brown and felt limp. What the hell?

Curious now and with a definite sense of foreboding, I put the thing on a tissue and found my glasses.

Care to know what I saw? I mean, you could click away now and live a happy, fulfilling life. I wouldn't blame you because this is not something you're going to forget.

You've been warned.

Here's what was on the tissue. And what had previously been in my mouth.
(photo courtesy of Google Images ... I certainly did not
have the presence of mind to take a photograph)

I gaped at the nasty little thing for a solid minute, my brain not willing to accept what I was seeing.

"Tom?" I called to the closed bathroom door, "I'm going to need you to come out here."

"Uh, I'm kind of busy in here," he said.

"No. No. I really, really need you to come out and see this," I said, unable to tear my eyes away from the horror on the Kleenex. And unless I was mistaken ... yes, it was starting to wave its little legs around. It was alive. And had been in my mouth.

Tom was gratifyingly appalled when I told him what had happened and showed him the evidence. I ran into the bathroom to gargle extensively, scrape my tongue , brush my teeth, and start again with the gargling, trying to get rid of the sensation of bug in my mouth holy shit buginmymouth there was a BUG in my aaargg MOUTH arrrggg!

I heard the front door open and close while I was systematically gargling my way through a quart of Listerine. When Tom came back into the bedroom, I asked him wildly, "Did you just go outside and SET IT FREE?"

"No," he said grimly, "No, I burned it. It was that horrifying."

"Oh," I said and thought about that. "That actually makes me feel a little better. Thank you."

"You're welcome."

Whoever said chivalry is dead?

Sidenote: This has officially taken the top spot in My Personal Brushes with Grossness. Previously, that spot had been occupied by the time I was sitting eating a Healthy Choice vanilla pudding cup by the light of the TV. One minute, creamy deliciousness. Next minute? Something large and bulky and WRONG in my mouth. Something that turned out to be a random broccoli spear. It was revolting, but seems positively tame now compared to buginmymouth.

Monday, September 6, 2010

First Day(s) of School

The girls went back to school last week. The elementary school started on Tuesday, and the junior high on Wednesday, which I initially thought was just plain whack. I was surprised to find that I actually quite enjoyed it. When I picked them up, they were each able to tell me about their first day of school without the other one interrupting to tell about her first day of school. Plus, I only had one set of emergency contact/no, we're still not migrant workers/yes, we're still Maine residents/field trip permission slip packets to fill out each evening. So, definite pluses to the staggered first days.

And why has it taken me nearly a week to post the first day of school pictures, with nary a blogged word all week? Well, in a word, it's been HOT around here. We had temperatures in the high nineties all last week in Maine.

Are you people in Arizona/California/The South done chuckling patronizingly yet? I realize that to some of you that's not really that hot. But I want you to bear this in mind: Mainers don't have air conditioning. When it's 97 degrees outside, it's 97 degrees inside - give or take a piddly degree.

I'm proud to identify as a Mainer in most circumstances, but on the topic of climate control, I stand firmly amongst the air-conditioned. After spending our first summer in a sweltering rental apartment while we house-hunted (that's a whole blog post in itself), I determined never to spend another summer without air conditioning. And although it's impossible to buy a house in Maine with central air conditioning (I know. I tried.), we have a BIG window unit in our living room and smaller ones in all the bedrooms. It does the job.

Unfortunately for the girls, the school system stands on the other side of the air conditioning topic. They spent their first week in 90 degree classrooms. I packed water bottles, grapes, Gatorade, pudding, and anything cool and refreshing I could think to stuff in their lunch boxes. Wednesday, I picked them up at school with an ice-chest full of Popsicles. Thursday, we headed straight to a friend's pool after school.

Bug, first day of school:
Bear, first day of school:
Friday night, the remnants of Hurricane Earl passed through and behind him came some beautifully cool and crisp fall air. Yesterday felt so downright autumnal that I baked pumpkin bread and dragged out my knitting.

The beauty of Maine (for those of us with short attention spans) is that as soon as you get tired of one season, another one comes rolling along.