After getting my kids off to the second day of school I feel qualified to judge the start of the academic year. The first day was smooth, fueled in part by the anticipation (largely unspoken) they were feeling about seeing their friends after a long summer. We had also been very careful about getting prep done the night before, which calmed the morning down a bit. Back packs were at the ready and school supplies labelled. After a summer of going to bed and getting up at obscene hours everyone made the effort to get to sleep at a decent time. Lunches were packed with hand picked goodies, new clothes were on freshly showered bodies...life was good.
Sasquatch, an incoming High School sophomore (the first year of HS here), was the most nervous of the three, but happy that the first day was only an orientation day for the newbies, and a short one to boot. I was happy (understatement alert) that he was keeping it together, because the dividing lines for the schools here meant that one of his very best friends was going to the other High School, and the drama levels over this have been acute this summer. My buddy Laurie, mother of one of his other best friends, the Red Headed Step Child, offered to drive them so they could arrive together and we could ensure they'd be on time. The two of them even stood still and grimaced against my porch railing so she could take pictures of The First Day of High School. Two tall long haired boys, one skinny (one not), one red headed (one not), dressed in cargo pants (or shorts) and dark t-shirts, climbed into the car (on time) and off they went.
Gumby and Surfer Dude got ready early and even had time for a round of Animal Planet before we had to leave. No drama whatsoever. I took them to school and went in with them to find their classrooms. Surfer Dude is in a one section class and has been since First Grade, so he's been with the same group of kids for four years. I always pity their teacher, whoever they may be. Twenty to one is not good odds. Gumby got a brand new to the school teacher this year and a MAN, no less. He doesn't look a day over fifteen, but he sure knew how to work this crowd. When I picked them up he raved about how much he liked his new teacher and that he couldn't wait for school today to see what he had in store for them. Wow. Fresh out of college and full of enthusiasm, you've gotta love it. Give him a year. Less if he helps in Surfer Dude's class.
The two younger ones came home and hung out. Sasquatch went to a friend's house and hung out. We had a calm dinner and a peaceful night, with only one piece of (fun) homework to be done. Nobody got sent home on Top Chef. Everyone went to sleep at reasonable times again. As I walked through my still house before bed, I sent a silent prayer of thanks to the patron saint of melodramatic children for the quiet of the day. I should have known better.
It started early with Sasquatch having to be physically parted from his bed by yours truly, Amazon Mom (superhero motto: Boys of sloth, Muscles of steel). Then when he came downstairs he couldn't find his glasses case. These are new glasses ( and expensive as hell, BTW) and he doesn't want to wear them any longer than he absolutely has to, so he needs the case to take them off and put them on per whim. On reflection, he reckoned he had left the case at his friend's house the day before. And, with Sasquatchian logic, he refused to take the glasses to school since a) he wasn't going to be wearing them for the entire day and b) they would break in his pocket without the case. (Ya think??) We were still hashing this out when I tried to give him his lunch account check to take with him and give to the lunch ladies. He was positive he knew what I was going to say, so every three words he interrupted me to say " I know, mom" in the most pathetically resigned voice he could muster. He didn't, in fact, know what I was going to say, so every time he interrupted me I, out of pure spite, started all over again at the beginning. Some time was chewed up here, trust me. Chewed up and spit out.
When we left the house (I was driving this time), Gumby was getting in the shower and Surfer Dude was making his lunch. A glitch or two under our belts, but still running smoothly. We pull up to get TRHSC and he doesn't come out. We go in to see what's keeping him, and find him running around looking for the paper which proves he's had his tetanus shot, a requirement for incoming sophomores. I would think a distemper shot would be more appropriate for the little darlings, but nobody asked me. Laurie, in pajamas and getting her other kids fed, was trying to help him narrow down where it could be. To every one of her suggestions he said "It's not there, mom" in the most pathetically resigned voice he could muster. Finally he reckoned he could have left it in her van and took her keys to go look. No dice. With us about to leave without him he took one last look around his room and found it...on the windowsill, where, he suddenly remembered, he had put it so he would remember where it was. As we pulled out of the driveway I told them, in the most pathetically resigned voice I could muster that I reckoned there was a reason the two of them were friends. They beamed proudly at their own ineptitude and off we went toward unsuspecting high school teachers.
When I got home Gumby hadn't gotten in the shower because SD wouldn't go and sit in the bathroom with him, and due to the "ghost" in our bathroom he won't go in alone. Drama ensued, but it was short lived and everything went smoothly from there on. Until...
As we were leaving to get them to school, my phone rang. It was Laurie, on her way to her first day on a new job. And she said...
"Please tell me you have my keys. Please tell me he laid them down in your car."
He didn't. I reckon they're in his pocket.