Sometimes, I get these ideas.
For example, last week Friday night, I had this idea.
I usually work late on Fridays but this particular Friday, I got out of work early.
I thought that since this hardly ever happens, it would be fun to go out and do something special as a family. We never get to go out on a Friday night.
Jeff grunted in agreement to my plan and I set things in motion.
The plan was for me to pick up the kids from daycare and then meet Jeff at a local restaurant for dinner.
“YEAH!!!!” the little kids screaming in excitement when I told them of my plan but then as I told them of where we were going to eat their tone changed from excitement to dread.
“NO!” they all hollered back at me.
“Well, where do you want to go?” I asked them
“RED ROBIN!” they screamed with delight at me.
“Yum!” was what I said.
Not only because yes, Red Robin is yummy but because it is their slogan and funny to say ‘Yum’ after someone says Red Robin.
Unfortunately, the kids did not get my funny and the car remained silent until I said, “Sure, I guess we can go there.”
The car once again erupted in joyous screams and I left like the best mom in the world because I had made my children happy.
Once Hayden was in the car, I called Jeff and told him of our change in location and we were off.
As I drove along something nagged at me.
I didn’t listen at first but as we got closer and closer to Red Robin’s location, I realized what that nagging feeling was and what a huge mistake I had made.
“Oh…. My….. Goodness!” I said gripping the wheel tighter.
“What, momma?” the kids asked from the back.
“We are going to Red Robin. Red Robin is located in the mall.” I said.
“Yeah! The mall!!!” the kids screamed excitedly.
“No you don’t understand,” I said beginning to feel my eyebrow twitch, “We are going to the mall on a Friday night during the Christmas shopping season. This is going to get ugly.”
The children in the van began to once again chatter. They just didn’t get my sense of fear and dread.
“GUYS!” I yelled, “You don’t understand. It’s Friday night. It’s the mall. It’s Christmas. And we are heading right into that mess where people are Christmas shopping at the mall. Do you know how crazy it’s going to be?!”
By now I was in full on panic mode.
We didn’t have actually go into the mall to get to Red Robin but we had to fight our way through the parking lot.
In my opinion, the parking lot is even worse.
There are the people who lolly-gage and get distracted by every single Christmas light they see and drive 2 miles an hour.
There are the people who race around the parking lot like its a race track not watching out for other vehicles or people.
There are the people who don’t follow the rules and stop when there is no stop sign and go when there is one.
There are people who can’t park or take up two parking spacing limiting the ones for the rest of us because they have a new sports car that can’t be touched.
But worse of all there are just people, lots and lots of people all of whom are on a mission, Christmas shopping.
As we turned into the mall parking lot and instantly were put in the middle of all of those people, my offensive driving instints kicked in and the kids got a lesson in road rage and learned more curse words than a sailor.
Finally, after circling the parking lot a gazillion times, I parked the car.
“Get out of the car and hold hands!” I screamed at the children still not calmed down from the drive, “You need to hold onto each other so that you don’t get hit by a car. This is serious!”
The children jumped to attention and we walked hand in hand to the restaurant door and soon where safe inside.
I led the children to the table and sat down, “Wine.” I said to the waiter when he came to take our order, “Wine just wine.”
When I calmed down and was able to speak, I looked at Jeff.
“You might want to start vetoing my ideas,” I said, “Especially the ones that involve driving around the mall at Christmas time on Friday.”