We took the two younger children to Maine last weekend because Zach is still in DC with his grandparents and, well, who wouldn’t choose to travel with two kids instead of three?
I hate hotels. Hate them. Can’t breathe because the air feels silicone and can’t sleep because the reality seems plastic and I lie awake at night tossing and turning and reminding myself how lucky I am to be in a bed. My husband, on the other hand, adores hotels, which is a good thing, given how often he used to travel. What he hates are B&Bs.
“But, you get to meet all sorts of interesting people,” I argue.
“Exactly. I don’t want to meet interesting people. I want to be anonymous.”
“But hotels are so sterile.”
“I like sterile.”
“But you can talk to people from all over at a B&B.”
“I don’t want to talk to people. I don’t like to talk to people. I want to be left alone with a Diet Coke and cable TV.”
Every now and then, I win out on the B&B, which is what happened this weekend in Boothbay Harbor. Benjamin loved the B&B, mostly because their backyard turned into mudflats when the tide went out. I clambered down the rocks with him twice so he could go through the mud and look for shells and stones. I even took Lilah with us one time. My husband – of I like sterile fame – stayed up on the grass.
Lilah, too, loved the B&B. That child will talk to anyone – sort of like the other two children. And their mother. One of these Rosenbaums is not like the others.
On Saturday, we spent the day painting the town red. We chose the Fairy Festival at the Botanical Gardens instead of Day Out With Thomas because, well, I’m the only one left in the house who still plays with the train set. We left with two new sets of fairy wings. Ben was flying high from having built three fairy houses out of wood and rocks, which of course he could have done for free in our backyard, and Lilah was feeling very grounded, having participated in Fairy Yoga. “This is a good sport for me,” she told me. “It’s not a running sport.”
When we returned to the B&B, Lilah and I went over to chat with our hosts, their kids, and one of the neighbors. I told them a bit about the day. Then Lilah geared up to tell a story.
“You know what? One time when we lived in New Jersey…” I knew the story that was coming because she had told it already a few times, to my extreme discomfort. Desperately, I tried to head her off, but she was not to be deterred. “One time in New Jersey, the cleaning ladies left the door open so we fired them.”
I would have preferred she had phrased it as “the cleaning service – which we used one morning every other week – left the front door wide open, letting out the heat and inviting in all manner of intruders of both the human and non-human variety, so we decided to no longer use that service.” I really would have preferred that wording, but she must have once heard us tell it the other way because that’s the way she’s told it several times now.
Our hosts dissolved into gales of laughter and the neighbor, who was actually doubled over, said “Our of the mouths of babes.” He was right, because sometimes our kids reflect back the worst of their parents without even knowing it. Later, I politely asked her not to tell that story again and resolved to try to give her better stories to tell about me.
To be on the safe side, we may want to take a break from B&Bs for awhile.