What a Day!

What a long and frustrating day! Esteban is still not feeling well so we cancelled my birthday party (dinner and dancing with friends) or rather rescheduled it until sometime after the holidays. Instead I took the girls for the day so Esteban could have some quiet at home to rest.

Wow, I have become spoiled (or maybe it’s that Saige is entering very active toddlerhood full-force), but two days in a row of running after three kids really exhausted me. I need my nanny! OK, I am officially spoiled. It also didn’t help that against my better judgment, I chose a very challenging schedule for us – horseback riding and then to meet up with a new girl in Jade’s class and her mom and go to Diversity (a kids’ city full of activities they can do, music, bright lights – like a children’s museum but five times as big and on steroids).
By lunchtime, I was ready to call it a day but we had plans to meet the girl and her mom. Saige also had to take a nap at the same time. What to do? The mom wanted to meet inside the huge mall but knowing how everybody here is always late here, I drove around until Saige fell asleep in the car, parked it in front of a park and a pizza place and asked her to meet us there. My kids were hungry so I pulled out some snacks and told them we would have to wait for the friends to get there.

Well, good thing I wasn’t waiting for them inside the mall because they were almost an hour and a half late (late even by Colombian standards!), by which point my kids were ready to eat the table we were sitting at (they kept calling to say they were almost there which is why I didn’t just go ahead and order). Finally, they arrived at almost 2 pm and we could finally eat lunch… but no, they parked and walked to the pizza place just to tell us that we now had to rush over to Diversity to get tickets and we could eat there. Meanwhile, they came with four friends in tow, including the new girl’s best friend from her old school. Great!

I was so frustrated. We finally got to lunch at 3:30 pm. My kids were cranky! Meanwhile, of course the new girl kept playing with her best friend and pretty much ignored Jade. I was trying to manage three kids in total mayhem. Saige’s new thing is to run as fast as she can in any direction without even looking back to see if anybody is following her. This place was packed with people. I had to run after her. She, being tiny, would dodge in between people’s legs with me huffing and puffing after her, saying “perdon, perdon, disculpe” as I lightly pushed past people. For not only was this place full of way too much electronic stimulation, but there were little mini buses all over the place. Saige came within inches of being run over by one!

I guess you get the point – it was an intense three hours! I was exhausted and kind of angry at this mom. We had talked several times about getting the girls together so they both have a friend at school. And then she shows up with the girl’s best friend! What was she thinking? Threesomes are challenging under the best of circumstances but this was a set-up for Jade being left out. I also wasn’t very keen about going to Diversity with a toddler in tow but the mom assured me that it would be fine and that she would help. Well, she tried to help and chase after Saige but she couldn’t keep up with her in the three inch heels she was wearing (yes, women here wear high heels everywhere, even to a children’s museum). “Wow, she is active for a girl”, was all that she could say. Yes, I warned her that Saige is super active.

After three hours of all of this fun, it was nearly 7 pm and everybody was just getting into the swing of things. I, on the other hand, was done! I told everybody that I couldn’t take any more. It took almost an hour to get out of the parking lot. I was at the end of my rope but Jade said that she was disappointed that the new girl brought her best friend but that it was still the best day she has had in Colombia. OK, I guess it was worth it then.
Now you might think that I am a true glutton for punishment but I am actually a true extrovert. We got home at 8 pm, quickly ate dinner, put Saige to bed and by 8:40, Jade, Siena and I were at our conjunto’s Novena celebration. We listened as neighbors played Christmas carols on the violin, read passages from the Bible and sang along, “Ven, ven, ven. Ven, ven, Jesus, ven, ven. No tardes tanto, no tades tanto, Jesus.” (“Come, come, come, Jesus. Come, come. Don’t take so long. Don’t take so long, Jesus.) Seven more Novena celebrations before Christmas…

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