I think it cooled down a bit last night. It got quite cool in our bedroom and I did not have enough blankets on to keep me warm. I could have got up and got another, but I was too lazy. When I first got up this morning and stepped outside, there was still clear sky and the air felt quite crisp.
Yet, in what seemed like no more than 15 or 20 minutes, clouds hid the clear sky, the temperature quickly warmed and it began to snow - fairly heavy, too. Margie and I had decided that we would do our Christmas shopping early this year and this was the day to begin, so I strapped Kalib into the car seat and off we went.
The temperature was 10 degrees (-12 C) but would rise to 20 (-6 C) by the time we would return home.
As we headed into "downtown" big-box strip Wasilla, we passed this man as he walked through the storm.
He held his head up high.
I can't be certain, but I'm pretty sure that he is not afraid of the night.
Walk on, man!
On the Parks Highway, we saw Coca Cola, coming down the road. Was this Wasilla Coca Cola, or was it headed to Fairbanks? Or places in between?
Wherever, off it went.
We were all hungry, so we went to McDonald's so Kalib could have some Chicken McNuggets, a tiny portion of french fries, apple slices and get a chipmunk toy. He showed little interest in the chipmunk. He is into Thomas.
Not so long ago, it was a spatula. He really got into that spatula.
Now it is Thomas the Train.
I have no idea what it will be next.
Whatever it is, Kalib always takes it very serious and delves deep.
He wanted to go into the McDonald's playground, climb into the tube and then come down the slide on the other end. Not long after he started, he stopped at a porthole to show off for his grandparents - grandma in particular. Boy, does he love his grandma!
I think its all that time she spends babysitting him.
Then things got tricky. He moved to the end of the tube, where it doubles back to the slide and there he paniced. Kalib froze. He would not move from this spot. "You've got to keep going, to the slide!" his grandma and I told him repeatedly.
"No!" he would shake his head and cry.
It was an exasperating feeling, both from inside the tube and out. Looking in, I even felt a little claustrophic, the way you do when you are not dead but people think you are so they bury and then you wake up in your coffin and no one can hear your shouts, because there is six feet of dirt on top of you.
We, of course, are too big to enter the tube. So I could not go in and coach him out. There were other kids in there, most a little bigger than he. They could see his plight. I kind of hoped one of them might lead him out, but none did.
This went on for many minutes - us trying to coax Kalib to either go forward to the slide or back to the entrance.
"No!" he would shake his head each time, crying all the while.
"Ok, Kalib," I finally told him. "Your grandma and I are going to go now. Goodbye."
Then we walked away - maybe 7 or eight feet, to a place where he could not see us.
Filled with new motivation, he soon popped his head into the entrance/exit, saw us there and smiled. "Hi Grandma," he said.
Boy, does he love his grandma!
As we prepared to leave, I saw two dogs waiting in the very long drive-through line. The lady told me their names, but I have forgotten.
So I will call the one on the left Frank and the one on the right, Henry.
Henry barked at me.
The lady told him to stop it.
Then we headed down to Target. We would have to make a left turn into the parking up there where you see another car waiting to turn left. I wondered if we would ever get a chance.The traffic coming from the direction of Anchorage seemed to be a nonstop river of lights.
But, when we got to the left turn lane, the drivers across both oncoming lanes of traffic stopped to create a gap that we could drive through. Margie waved thanks to them from the passenger seat as I quickly shot through the gap.
I briefly put my iPhone in the cart. "No!" Kalib said. Then he grabbed the phone and threw it onto the floor. Not so long ago, I swore to myself that no matter what he might do, I would never harshly scold Kalib. But I did. Then I put the phone back in the cart and refused to go any further until he picked it up and handed it to me.
A bit later, I discovered that the "on-off" button was missing.
So I can't turn off my phone now. That's not really a problem, except that sometimes an ap will lock up and the only way to get that ap working again is to restart the iPhone.
It still doesn't matter much, though. Before the end of the year, I plan to get an iPhone 4s - mostly for the camera. The camera in the 4s - really good.
Maybe we bought some gifts at Target, maybe we didn't. Shopping in these stores is almost impossible for me. We go down the aisles and my mind just blanks out. Besides Kalib throwing my phone on the floor, the only thing I clearly remember is the many Thomas the Train toys.
We could not buy any of those. Kalib was with us.
If the highway is not too hazardous, we will drive to Anchorage tomorrow and try again.
On the way home, we stopped at Metro Cafe - right about the usual time of 4:00 PM. Branson and a new boy named Jacob were there, claiming to be helping out.
When we pulled into the driveway, I looked in my rearview mirror and saw that Kalib had fallen asleep.
When he felt the car stop, Kalib woke up. Sort of. Waking up wasn't an easy process.