Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Oh Mickey, you're so fine...

We had a wonderful visitor from the West Coast this past weekend. And it gave me a glimpse of how life here could be so different.

Mickey Ellinger arrived on our doorstep last Friday, fresh from a red eye from Oakland. Among the many wonderful things that happened to us after Liam was born four years ago, Mickey became an important force in our lives. For those who don't know of this magical being, Mickey has held a Friday night sleep over for the kids of various friends for many years now. During the past couple years, Liam has spent the night at Mickey's for the majority of Friday nights, bonding tightly with the handful of other kids who stay over. There are many things we miss about the Bay Area, and this ranks right up there.

So Mickey tumbled in Friday morning and Liam was ecstatic and could barely contain himself. Here he is just a few minutes after Mickey arrived:



Jen took Mickey that afternoon to see Stephen Colbert speak at Harvard. The next day, I had to do some work at Kalian's Coop. Jen and Mickey took the kids for a hike and then we met at a playspace for a birthday for one of Liam's classmates. We came back that afternoon and were all playing and I literally started to fall asleep while playing with Liam. Mickey tapped me on the shoulder and said the words that I have fantasized about everyday for the past five months: "Why don't you go take a nap and I'll play with the kids?"

So I did. I woke up when Jen came home. Thanks to Mickey, once again, we were having a big date night. The Kennedy School had its formal and Mickey was watching the kids for us. We had a big tapas dinner and then dressed in our finest went and partied at the Harvard Faculty Club. It felt very elitist and patrician and high school prom-ish all that once.

The next day, Mickey and I took the kids on the T into Boston. And boy, what a difference an extra adult makes. As I wrote before, I'm proud that I've taken the kids on so many outings. But I've avoided things like the train because it becomes so stressful handling the two kids, a stroller, etc. But it was a breeze with Mickey. We went to Faneuil Hall and Quincy Marketplace, walked over to the docks, and then wandered back to Quincy Market for lunch. I had done a similar outing on my own over the summer and it left me so traumatized that I've avoided the trains with both kids ever since. But this time, we had a ball, it was quite enjoyable.

Mickey took off that night, and we missed her immediately.

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