Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Waldo, You Wonderful Rascal

We got back a few days ago from an 8 day trek from our front door to the front door of Donn's cousins and back again. They live near Phoenix and it was a 27 hour drive, which we broke up over 3 days. I decided the only things I was going to bring for the boys were books and markers and paper, because I like to make things as difficult on myself as possible and I am forcing the boys to love books. If there are no alternatives, a book is 10 times better than a poke in the eye.

The only other entertainment they had was to try to drive each other crazy from their car seats, to throw snacks all over the van, or to look peacefully out the window and enjoy the view (rare!). The Where's Waldo book proved to be the best one and they looked at it for hours at a time. We wound up picking up another in Arizona before our drive back.

The drive went amazingly well for the first two days, but the last day was a bit harrowing. We didn't make very many stops because I wanted to get to Phoenix before it got too late. I had estimated an arrival time between 6-8 PM. We got to Flagstaff (150 miles away) at 7:30 and I called to let them know we were getting close. Later than expected, but not too bad. Suddenly from the back seat I hear Dylann say, "Jack is sticking his gum up his nose!" I look back to see Jack smiling that impish grin with his finger in his nose. Before I can do or say anything, his face transforms to a look of panic and he pulls his finger out with a trembling lip. The gum is gone. I immediately start running through possible scenarios. I have no previous experience with foreign objects lodged in the nostril, so I have nothing to work with. I think maybe he will inhale it and it will go into his trachea and he will choke. Maybe he could snort it in and it would go into his throat and he could swallow it. I pull over and grab the tweezers, open the door, ready to save the day. I could see the gum up there, but couldn't get a good hold of it and suddenly it disappeared completely into the secret tunnels of the nose.

I called my grandma, I called Donn's cousin, Amy, I called the doctor. We decided since he could breathe okay, it would be safe to drive to Phoenix and take him to the hospital there. He fell asleep on the way and when we got there, we found the gum had fallen out onto his shirt while he was asleep! Excellent news, because no one wanted to go sit in an emergency room for four hours waiting for a doctor to stick another foreign object in Jack's nose to remove the first one.

After two relaxing days by the pool at Amy and Robbie's, we were backing out of the driveway in their posh subdivision and waving goodbye. Back on the road. We went by the Grand Canyon, which was amazing of course. It's like standing at the edge of the earth and looking at an alien landscape. Dylann was impressed, but Jack acted like we see giant, awe-inspiring canyons 1 mile deep on a regular basis. Whateva.

We also went by Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico to see 300,000 Mexican Free-Tailed bats take flight at sunset. Jack loves bats, so this was the highlight of the trip for him. The bats were very small, about as long as your thumb, with a wing span of about 8 inches. We sat at the mouth of the cave and waited, waited, gasped and held our breath because we heard a noise....then waited, and waited. Everyone had to be still and quiet, so the bats wouldn't be bothered by the fact that they had an audience. That was the tough part for the boys. Then you could hear this rush of wings and they came swirling out of the cave like smoke. It was really peaceful, watching them emerge in the quiet, warm night air. We were not allowed to take pictures, but I have the feeling bats are probably hard to photograph anyway. It's dark and they're fast.

That was our last fun stop on the trip and we headed home. Now it's back to the cool autumn weather here in Minnesota. Summer is over and Dylann starts school tomorrow....wow. Time goes by so fast.


Lulabelle said...

wow....the gum up the nose. the idea gave me sympathy pain!

WhatWorksForMom said...

Wow, sounds like a fun trip! We've been to Carlsbad Canyons too - isn't it amazing??

Jessi Louise said...

Yes, the gum up the nose was very uncomfortable for him. I felt bad for the little pooper. He definitely won't do that again.

Carlsbad was very cool, but unfortunately we didn't have time to take a tour of the inside of the caves. Next time!