August 25, 2000
Tot Soup


Her flight was delayed by twenty minutes -- and then she spent another twenty minutes sitting on the tarmac, waiting for a boarding gate to free up at ridiculously-overloaded Oakland International -- but otherwise Daughter #2 landed in *Mom's airspace* last night without incident.

Half an hour later, we were all sitting around The Castle, eating cheese-in-a-can.

The third and final *Tot Visit* is now officially underway. Like fine soup du jour, each one of the Tot Visits this month has required a different combination of ingredients and seasonings ... different preparation and cooking times ... and an altogether different "presentation."

With Jaymi, the main ingredients were new glasses, big Fritos, and lots of gentle discussions about saving money for the future and disentangling from bad boyfriends. With Kyle, it was jalapeño potato chips, discreet displays of maternal affection, and buying as many plain white $37 designer T-shirts as possible.

As we drove to the airport last night, David and I formulated our recipe for this particular visit with Daughter #2:

Ask her lots of questions about the music they play at the raves ... but don't frisk her for Ecstacy. Smile and nod pleasantly when she shows us the boyfriend photos ... even the boyfriends who are already showing signs of male pattern baldness. Allow her to choose her own school clothes. (Unless gold lamé somehow becomes involved. Then we might have to step in and say something.) Question her subtly about her plans for the future.

And above all else: Enjoy the heck out of our time together.

It won't be difficult. Kacie exudes a delightfully loopy energy that ricochets off of everything and everyone around her. Spend ten minutes with this kid, and you'll find yourself painting your toenails silver, listening to hard-core trance and squirting Easy-Cheese directly into your mouth. I guarantee it.

It's going to be a fun weekend. If I can just stay awake long enough to enjoy it.

Kacie reaches her peak energy and boy-hunting levels after dark. I could hear the persistent bleep bleep bleep of numbers being punched into the telephone, deep into the night last night. As long as she was flitting around the Castle, I found it impossible to sleep ... not because the noise or the light (or the possibility of another $200 long distance bill) were so disturbing, but because I find her so fascinating that I just wanted to stay awake and LISTEN to her all night. I think I finally drifted off sometime around 3 a.m.

This afternoon I am running purely on caffeine, SnackWells Creme Sandwich Cookies and sheer maternal fortitude. I'm as tired as I can ever remember feeling. A few minutes ago I hung up on Franz, and it wasn't even on purpose this time.

But it's OK. She's worth it.

As I write this -- during my bazillionth coffee break of the afternoon -- she is on an AC Transit bus somewhere, floating around the general Alameda/Oakland/Berkeley area in search of "a nail salon and a cool place for lunch," as she put it in the e-mail she dropped into my mailbox a little while ago. We'll be hooking up here at my office at the end of the day. If it's early enough, I plan to make her finish my filing for me.

If it's late, I plan to have her CARRY me home.

Dropping off the radar now for a couple of days of Tot Soup. You know the drill. Check back on Monday for updates, poorly-scanned Polaroids and lots of insufferable maternal bragging ... and in the meantime, have a great weekend, everybody!

Tiredly (but happily) yours,

one year ago

throw a rock