xmlns:og='http://ogp.me/ns#' Yeah. Good Times.: Every Monday so far this summer

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Every Monday so far this summer

This is Child 2's first real summer with camp, before this he's just gone to his preschool which was year-round. Since I've never had an NT kid in summer camp before, I figured I'd just do what everybody else with an NT kid seems to do: to send him to 4,000 different camps. Kids need variety, right? Otherwise they get bored? (Answer: Probably, but TOO FUCKING BAD). I made an elaborate schedule (on a spreadsheet!) and picked camps where he would attend with his buddies.

Okay. If you have littler kids than mine and you think this might be a good idea, let me please be the first to tell you that this is not a good idea. Experienced parents will already know this, because they've done this already and very quickly realized what a stupid fucking idea this is. Reasonable-minded people may now also be asking themselves: "who in their right mind would send their kid to a new fucking place every week?" The answer? Only an idiot would do that, apparently. (HI! :wave:)

The first day of camp is always the learning day, when you find out what the schedule is, what the rules are, where to park for pick up and drop off, etc. If you go some place different every week, however, every Monday you're starting all over again from the beginning. That's not something you think about, though, when you're an idiot and planning an elaborate social/camp schedule (on a spreadsheet!!) for your 6 year old.

That will definitely be something you think about next year, though. Because never again.

Child 1 is going to only one camp this summer; his fancy schmancy social skills camp, which is far away and at the top of a great big hill. He needs to be there by 9:00 every morning.

Child 2 goes to a different camp every week, in various different locations all around town. He, too, needs to be there by 9:00 every morning.

See, I bet you're already starting to see the problem here. That's probably because you're smarter than I am!

I've taken a map of Berkeley and I've labeled some pertinent locations, for you visual learners. Items in red are Child 2's various camps; there are actually more than 4 but some are in the same locations, even though they're different camps. I don't know... don't ask.

Every camp has a different schedule and a different policy for tardiness. Some say "be here no later than 9:05 or you'll miss the bus!!" or "be here no later than 9:10 because we lock the doors ahahahahahahaha!!!" and some say "meh, no worries. Be here when you can." But since every Monday is our first day, I never know what the policy actually is until we get there.

So, every Monday morning I have to race across town to drop off Child 1 (he can be there as much as 15 minutes early, so he always goes first). There is traffic, there is chatter... it is stressful.

And then I have to race back across town to wherever our new location is and hope that it's okay for us to be a little bit late.
... and then? I still have to get myself to work, usually by 10:00 but sometimes 9:30
This past Monday, however, was the Mother of all Mondays. Child 2's camp is waaaaaayyyyyy the fuck up in the hills above Berkeley, in a goddamn regional park for chrissakes (#4 on the map up there) with these twisty turny mountain roads. I had no idea where I was going so I'd printed a variety of different driving instructions. Except? It was really foggy. Like... really really fucking foggy. It's hard enough trying to see street signs that are buried behind piles of trees in the middle of the goddamn wilderness, but I couldn't even see more than a foot in front of me. So I got the GPS going, but it was telling me things like "make a U-turn whenever legally possible," when I KNEW I was headed in the right direction.

It was frustrating. To say the least.

I got him there eventually; about 20 minutes late. Luckily it was one of the "meh, whatever" camps so he didn't miss anything. But then I still had to find my way back down the mountain, of course.....

Next year? One camp. Maybe two. And that's it.