I’m stuck in this one-way tunnel – that I wasn’t supposed to be in – to an airport I don’t need to be going to – in a city I don’t know – with a dying cell phone.
And I start crying.
But just how did a day trip to Boston get so emotional?
Let’s go back.
It’s a milestone birthday for Ryan, and I wanted to do something big. Of course, my original idea of two nights in a hotel in Boston with meals and touring and the museum of science (note: astronomy is big in this household) was too expensive and not something we had time for now. So it was scaled down to a day trip – the museum and a nice seafood dinner.
We’d been to the science museum in Schenectady and had a blast. This little, fun educational space that we’d been to twice – and on quiet days. Meaning us grown-ups could play all the games and do all the hands-on science exhibits like play with giant magnets and peer inside MRI machines and look through all the microscopes and be dorks.
So when you go to the Museum of Science in Boston? On a Saturday? It’s not quiet. Actually, it’s crazy busy with hundreds of small children. Who make you feel old. And their parents, who are looking at you like, “Where’d you lose your child?”
You don’t end up standing in line for the little hands-on exhibits where you can compare your hand size to a gorilla’s or hold onto something and make your hair static-y or close one eye to see the optical illusion. Because there’s a 5-year-old in line in front of you and a 7-year-old in line behind you. And their mom is holding their crying 2-year-old sister who is in need of a diaper change.
And you feel old. And dorky. And like you should probably not be in line.
No big deal – two awesome planetarium shows and a seafood dinner, right? It’s a great day!
Except between leaving the planetarium and the gift shop and losing my debit card (in my own car), it’s getting late. And my cell phone battery is getting low, and I need it to guide us home. So I pull up directions to the restaurant 1.5 miles away – but don’t turn the navigator on.
And then I miss so many turns and dodge so many near-accidents I create over the next 20 minutes that I end up stuck driving in a one-mile-long one-way tunnel toward an airport.
And I start crying. I’m stuck in this tunnel to Not Seafood Dinner, and I’m crying.
And it’s getting too late to do a nice dinner in Boston (also, I’ve been crying and am thus a mess), and it’s time to just set the navigator home.
And I’m crying.
Note that Ryan hasn’t complained, this entire time.
It’s just me, and I’m still flipping crying.
For the next two-and-a-half hours, because I cannot pull myself together. Basically because we aren’t getting crab cakes and clam chowder.
Also because my perfect birthday plans didn’t quite go as planned.
See, I freaked out because it shouldn’t have been that hard to make fancy dinner happen. Ryan makes dinner every night. That salad above? Tonight’s dinner. It was ready when I got home.
I didn’t even have to make that Boston dinner. I just had to get us there.
And instead, I’m in a one-way one-mile-long tunnel to the airport/Not Dinner.
In his good boyfriend way, Ryan said how he was just happy to spend the day with me, dinner wherever was fine. My internal crazy girl reaction to that? “YEAH BUT SOMEDAY THAT’S GOING TO GET OLD AND THAT’S NOT GOING TO BE ENOUGH AND SOMEDAY YOU’RE GOING TO BE MAD BECAUSE I COULDN’T GET YOU TO THE RESTAURANT FOR CLAM CHOWDER AND CRAB CAKES.”
Internal reaction. External? You’re right, I’m still just crying.
Now it’s 8:30 p.m. on the following Thursday. The world didn’t end when we didn’t get crab cakes and clam chowder. Neither did the relationship. Even after I spent 2.5 hours unable to talk as I drove in snow from Boston, only able to wipe the tears from my eyes because I felt like the day was ruined, thus the birthday was ruined, thus EVERYTHING EVER IS RUINED FOREVER.
Actually, it’s 8:30 p.m. on the following Thursday and everything’s fine. Because things don’t always go as planned and life goes on. And the biggest bummer about the science museum day isn’t the clam chowder (which would have made us get home hours later and we were already zombies) or that we didn’t “play” at all the exhibits (because kids are cute to watch love science) but that our new solar power lamp that lights up and makes a stick-figure biker pedal… doesn’t actually work.
It’s 8:30 p.m. and Family Feud is on television. The dishes are washed, the coffee is in the coffee maker ready to brew tomorrow morning. When Family Feud is over, I’ll turn on James Taylor’s Greatest Hits on the record player and celebrate the fact that the world didn’t end when we didn’t get crab cakes for dinner. That instead, the Italian food we picked up on the way home and ate while chatting and watching Hoarders… was a good dinner.
Now, the whole story kinda gives me the giggles. Because really – it was okay.
Even if I broke down – in tears – in the middle of the Lieutenant William F. Callahan Tunnel.
We all have those days, right?
Please, share your unnecessary freakout story. I want to know.