As a parent, there are very few words that pain me than when my teenager says …but there’s nothing to do. Or, what can I do? Or, I’m bored. Reaching back into my own childhood, those questions and statements would be met with a list of chores guaranteed to keep you busy for days and would teach you that uttering such phrases to your parents was a very bad idea. To my chagrin, that does not work with my own kid.
Since we are all new to the land of The Cape, we don’t have a handy list of things to do when the weather isn’t cooperating. And so we Googled it (or more precisely asked Siri) when presented with overcast and rainy weather on our second day here. The list was good but it required us to be in “normal” times and not our current social distancing, everything’s closed state of being. It sent me back to our second summer visiting Delaware when he was barely three and we were unlucky enough to presented with four consecutive days of rain and very little to do outside of shopping at the nearby outlets. You can imagine this isn’t a three-year-old’s idea of fun. Fortunately we had packed a dvd about farm animals and we watched it non-stop until our eyes were bleeding but it kept him occupied. When we couldn’t take it any longer, we packed up the car with two days left on our week’s rental and headed home.
That’s where my thoughts were drifting yesterday afternoon, not even twenty-four hours into our trip as I stared into a pair of sullen eyes. The kids is addicted to The Office and even episodes of that would no longer placate him. Let’s go for a ride, I said. Always an option regardless of the weather and so we jumped in the car and headed to explore what lay beyond our very “boring” room at the Inn. We hunted down a shack selling lobster rolls and the best clam chowder I have ever tasted. We drove a little more but then I remembered my quest to visit the nearby bookstore and so entered the address into my mapping software and guided my husband on what turns to make.
When we arrived at the sparsely stocked new/used store they both looked at me with a look that may have said $%@& but I gently pulled them inside and said I’d buy them anything they desired if we could have a few minutes of peaceful browsing. The store does not accomodate more than one family of browsers so we had to wait our turn at the back of the store until the others had been checked out. In the end, the visit netted three new/used books and at least two happy people (me and my husband, in case you didn’t guess). I bought a book that has over 100 people waiting for it at the library both online and hard copy and the book seller warned me I wouldn’t be available for family interaction for the next day or two until I finished it. This sealed the sale for me!
We did not come up with any other options about spending the rainy day but somehow we mananged to survive and today the sun is gloriously shining for a beautiful day at the beach. We made it to the other side. At least for now.