Maybe homeschooling has changed me more than I thought. Yesterday I lugged the boys downtown on the bus, to stock up at my favorite two stores in Bklyn, Sahadis and TJs. As always, I bought more than I could really carry, and ended up staggering back to the bus with a loaded backpack and two shopping bags, barely able to hold Fynn’s hand. As we approached the bus stop, we passed the usual row of street vendors, hawking everything from workbooks to cell phone covers to silk shawls. I ignored them all, but managed to catch a glimpse of a small stack of clear plastic containers with neon-colored lids, each housing something that looked like a wee turtle.
I soldiered on, though my peripheral vision picked up the fact that my boys were moving slower and slower, and starting to look over their shoulders and point. After the first “Mom, can we get a turtle??” I stopped, dropped my bags to the pavement, and told them they could at least go ask the price. Somehow in that moment I decided it was a good idea. Science at home! Responsibility! A pet again!
The vendor saw me looking back and gestured wildly for me to come over, but I grinned and gleefully declined, refusing to get involved. Douglas came back to tell me they were ten bucks apiece, and I found myself agreeing that if he paid for it, he could get one. A frantic digging in pockets, however, turned up a grand total of about 6 bucks between us all. He went back with his fistful of change, and the two of them returned clutching a green cage and huge grins.
The back of the bus on the way home turned into Red-striped Slider Care 101, as two men sitting near us both knew enough about the particular kind we’d gotten to keep the boys enthralled. They didn’t happen to mention that they can live up to 50 years however, which gave me a twinge or two once I got home and Googled our new family member! What gave me hope though was Douglas starting his schoolwork list for the day this morning, before I could get to it, and assigning himself complete care of the turtle. We’ll see how it goes!
Ok, I have to confess, before I managed to finish this post the boys came home and showed me a video they’d made while I was out. It was of the poor tiny thing harnessed with string to a miniature cart made of Lego, dragging it across the carpet. Big sigh. I think I have some teaching to do about animal care … BOYS! There might not be much chance of it living to 50, ya think? I’m no longer sure about the title of this post either … hmmm.