We had our Christmas all planned. We were not going to travel this year and Jamma was coming to visit us. Then, a couple of weeks before Christmas, Jamma called and said her condo fell out of escrow and asked if we wanted to come to Palm Springs instead of her visiting us in NorCal. Having lived through a few dreary weeks of clouds and rain, and having come to the realization that we were going to miss out on our burgeoning tradition of Christmas Eve with the Bannings, it took us about five minutes to decide we were going on a road trip!
I mean, seriously, how could we refuse?
We sketched out a rough plan for the week and did some power shopping to make sure everything was done before we hit the road on the 20th. Our plan was to leave about 10:00 a.m. so we could meet the Heffs for a park date in the afternoon. But then this happened.
Let me back up and explain. I was in the house, busily packing, when I heard a knock on the back door. I opened the door to find Bruce, speckled with mud and asking for help. I had no idea what was going on, but apparently Ezra had been digging in the backyard (really? now??) and had accidentally broken a sprinkler pipe. As Bruce described the scene — he was getting something together in the garage when Finn started frantically calling for him. He looked over and there was water sprinkling down. In that moment of disconnect, he thought it was raining only on Ezra.
Alas, it wasn’t rain. And it wasn’t an easy fix either because it was an input pipe not an output pipe, so shutting off the sprinkler valve didn’t solve the problem. Four hours, a trip to the hardware store, tons of mud and some ruined clothes later, we finally hit the road at 2:00 p.m.
I have to say, I marvel at Bruce’s patience in these situations, which, with two boys, are more frequent than I would like. He says there are a lot of expletives running through his head, but what the boys and I see is a dad pretty calmly figuring out a fix to a problem and enlisting the perpetrator’s help.
We made it to El Patron (Finn’s pick) for dinner at 7:30 and ran into our friend Lisa and her husband Allen there. We ended up having a lovely dinner before driving the rest of the way to Palm Springs that night.
As a side note, on our way out of Altadena we drove by our old house. It looks great, no changes we could see and the drought-tolerant garden is flourishing. My heart hurt just seeing it again.