Hey Oprah! Do you watch “Breaking Bad?” We recently watched the second to last episode of the series. Without giving too much away, Walt goes in hiding. This guy who creates new identities puts him up in teeny cabin in the woods in New Hampshire. He can’t leave if he doesn’t want to get caught by the authorities. Let me paint the picture of his new pad. It’s a little cabin with a natural gas bullet on the side of it that puts out enough power to give lights and snowy television from Montreal at best. There is a wood stove that warms the place, and his connection that is helping him hide comes once a month with the groceries. There is one lame dvd and no books that I could see. It’s winter. Here is a list of what there isn’t: cable, wifi, land lines, cell phone, computer, iPad, and the list goes on. So there sit’s Walt battling lung cancer, the loss of everything including his family, boredom, and the memory of all the hideous things he has done to get to this point. Sounds like a real vacation! Both Greg and I wondered how soon that panic would set in for us without all our devices.
With that nice little recap of Walter White’s new circumstances, let me recap my day yesterday.
7am: I got both boys and myself ready to get out of the house at 8am.
8am: Driving to school, sitting in the car line, dropping Mikey and his friend Alyna off at 8:30.
8:32am: Driving to Altamonte Springs to drop Pierce at his Nana’s. He’s not thrilled since he just wanted to be at home.
9am: Pierce is at Nana’s and over his disappointment, and I am back in my car heading to the studio to work for 5 hours.
2:15: Head back to Altamonte to get Pierce.
2:45: Head back to Lake Mary to get Mikey at school.
3:45: Get home. Get settled and start homework. Why kids in America need 8-9 hours of schooling 5 days a week, 3/4ths of the year and we still rank far down the list in education on the global stage is beyond me. Seems it’s an archaic system full of bureaucracy, but I digress.
4:45: Send the boys off to play, and decide to just lie down for 15 minutes. My cell phone rings…make that 5 minutes…
4:55: Start cleaning my house that has been neglected terribly for at least two weeks. Knowing I have nothing on the schedule tomorrow, I don’t want to spend the day cleaning. So I’ll do it this evening and the boys and their dad can eat dinner tomorrow night.
6:00: Periodic hollering, lots of cleaning and organizing, trying to stay focused, Dad comes home from work, and head straight to his office for 20 minutes (the bathroom.) I’m not sure he is actually doing anything in there except hiding, and maybe crying a little about coming home to chaos.
6:30: Greg takes the boys outside to play for a little bit before it rains. Pierce and Mikey are wild. Lot’s of screaming and loud noises and more energy than is truly necessary.
6:50: They return inside the house, and I am still finishing up cleaning.
7:00: I make a quick dinner for the boys, and start to figure out what to do for Greg and me. He remembers that we have hamburgers that need grilling before they go bad.
7:02: Greg checks the weather radar and sees that we have about 10 minutes to get these on the grill before all hell breaks loose. In the meantime the boys are eating (fueling up) between running laps around the house. Surely their energy could power all of central Florida.
7:05: G.—armed with an umbrella, cooks the burgers.
7:10: The power goes out. Wait it comes back on-wait off-wait on- wait off—and it’s out! Thank goodness for propane.
7:11: I didn’t think it was possible, but the boys are even wilder in their new-found adventure in the dark. With nothing running—their voices seem impossibly loud.
7:15: Dad is irritated with the inconvenience, lighters that don’t work very well for lighting candles, ketch-up that squirts out all over the place when he is putting the fixin’s on his burger in the extremely ambient light—and the screaming and squealing of two boys at a 1000 decibels.
7:16: I am trying to keep my cool as Dad is adding his voice to the din in an attempt to scare the boys into silence. It doesn’t work, it just gets louder and more tense.
7:17: It’s not bed time yet, and the boys haven’t had a bath, but it’s time for jammies and a brainstorm about how we are going to kill the next 45 minutes without killing each other.
7:18: I am trying to eat my burger and my cell rings. It’s my design partner with a few questions. We didn’t stay on phone long when she realized what kind of fun was going on at my house. She left me to deal with THAT alone…some partner…
7:19: Dad disappears…I think he is sitting in his truck meditating in the silence about how far he could get before we discovered he was gone. How far would he have to go to get back to civilization where a tv would work?
7:40: I have the boys in jammies and in their beds with a couple of devices that run off batteries. I figured this might restore some serenity to our ultra-serene environment.
7:41: I discover that G. has not actually left, but is sitting with his cell phone on the front porch. When he finds out the boys are in bed, he comes back inside. We sit in the dark staring at each other, and then decide to try our tablets to see if we can avoid the uncomfortable silences, and our own thoughts. Holy cow! They work—our wifi is still in action! Oh! Thank God! I can avoid thinking about how hot it is going to be sleeping tonight without fans and AC if the power should stay out very long.
7:50: The power comes back on! The boys want to get up and watch tv. Instead, they get a bath and sent back to bed, because they are still ramped up.
8:10: We are back in business. This is actually when we decided to watch the “Breaking Bad” episode re-capped earlier. As Greg is absorbing the magnitude of Walt’s enforced solitude, he looks at me and says he thinks he might have trouble living like that, to which I responded “Ah…Duh! You had trouble with 30 minutes of it!” It’s nice that we can laugh about these things now that the power is back on!