Back in November, I was chatting with my mother-in-law and one of her friends about the challenges of a big relocation. Like DH and I did in December 2002 and then again in November 2007, both of them have moved across the country. There was one thing we all agreed on: it takes a long time to build close, lasting friendships. Two years, they both asserted.
So here I am at a year and a half in. Remember being in high school, and you had "in school" friends that you only saw in class? You liked them and looked forward to seeing them, but for whatever reason neither of you took that extra step to see each other in the evenings and on weekends? Versus "out of school" friends whom you saw during the day and also hung out with at home?
I am currently stuck in that place where I really only have "in school" friends. I have met so many super cool women through the co-op preschool and MOMS Club, I've honestly been pleasantly surprised at how comfortable I feel with everyone. (That's not to say I think I'm super cool... but you know, it's nice to be in good company.) I've had smaller, personal playdates with a mom or two here and there, but by and large Bean and I only socialize during the larger group activities. I'm starting to really crave a closer, individual relationship... someone I can call during the day on one of the extremely rare occasions when it rains in Seattle and we are stuck inside, bored.
And like I said, it's not from lack of potential BFFs. The events we attend are filled with other moms that I'd love to spend more time with. But getting over that hump to a one-on-one date... that's a toughie for me. Partly a confidence issue, I'm sure, but with having the kids as an excuse to get together, that's not really a huge problem. I think it's mainly time. Seeing them enough that it's socially appropriate to make the transition.
An exception to my in-school-friends-only space is Jen, whom I "met" through blogging (almost two years ago, in fact) and now enjoy seeing in person. But she has an important day job involving cancer research, so I can't really give her a call. Well, I could, but it would go something like this.
Me: "Heeeeey Jen. Whatcha doin'?"
Jen: "Um, I'm at work right now, curing cancer."
Me: "Oh. So I guess you don't want to come over with Jillian and let the kids play while we dress up my dog in little costumes and giggle while she stands there frozen in embarrassment."
Jen: "I really can't right now."
Me: "Okay, maybe next time."
So sometimes I end up calling DH at work, just in case he wants to tell me the good news that the cleaning crew shampooed the carpets last night and now tons of people are barfing from the fumes so the boss is sending everyone home. Because that happened to me at work once. He always answers, "Hey honey! What's up?" But he says the what's up in a way that means please tell me quickly what you need because there are many men silently standing around my desk right now who are waiting to resume talking to me about our Important and Serious Work, and not in a way that means please ramble on about the contents of Bean's latest diaper and how that relates to what he's eaten in the past 24 hours. Dead end there, too.
I would ask for some advice on breaking that in-school/out-of-school barrier, but I imagine I'll get comments like, "You should call one of the moms and ask her to go to the park or something!" Which is certainly the correct answer and if I could do that, I already would. I am looking for something more like, "You should loudly mention at the next meeting that you are about to inherit ungodly sums of money from a long-lost relative, and you can't wait to take all of your friends, regardless of how long you've known them, on an all-expense-paid cruise of the Caribbean." Now that is useful advice, and I suppose if you have any suggestions along those lines, I would appreciate you sharing them.
**We now return you to your regularly scheduled post.**
Father's Day was teeeeerific. DH has been asking ever since Bean was born: "How old does he have to be before we can take him to a baseball game?" If the other families at the game on Sunday were any indication, just a few days old is sufficient. But I wanted to hold off until Bean was at least able to hold his own head up. In case he had to duck from a foul ball or something.
As a Father's Day gift to DH, I purchased tickets for us to see the Mariners. I wasn't particularly thrilled about it, as I find the game of baseball to be among the most boring pastimes in the world, up there with watching ice melt and playing Risk. But I was pleasantly surprised that this game turned out to be AWESOME! I think it helped that we arrived at the bottom of the third inning because of Bean's nap... the game didn't drag interminably like it usually does. And the ending was one of the on-the-edge-of-your-seat variety that even I can appreciate -- with a Mariners win, of course! Bean (wearing his Ichiro t-shirt) was amazed at all the new sights and sounds, and DH's grin didn't leave his face the entire day.
One Seattle baseball tradition that we did not partake in was the garlic fries they sell at the game. WHAT? you must be saying to yourself. BUT SUNNY! YOU WORSHIP THE GODS OF GARLIC! And you would be absolutely right. Before first-hand experience of these garlic fries, I would have insisted that there is no way, no how ever too much garlic on anything, ever.
But alas, I would have been wrong.
When DH went to a game with one of his friends last year, he ate a bowl of these garlic fries. They are basically your average run-of-the-mill fry covered in several pounds of that minced garlic you can buy in plastic jars at the grocery store. He came home to my waiting arms, and he STANK.
I have never in my life smelled something so offensive. No skunk, no poopy diaper, could make me gag like this did.
I made him shower, twice. I wouldn't let him put his clothes in the hamper, lest they infect all the other pants and shirts that were innocently awaiting their turn to be laundered. I made him put everything on his person, down to socks and underwear, into the washer immediately. I considered making him sleep in the guest room, but he promised to stay near the edge of his side of the bed, so I didn't push that one.
Needless to say, we skipped the garlic fries this time around. But Seattlites have my undying respect for the amount of garlic they are collectively able to consume. It's truly awe-inspiring. At the risk of offending the man sitting next to us, I snapped this picture of his empty bowl of garlic fries so you can see the carnage.