I was sent home from my Monday book discussion at the library with a bouquet of bright mylar balloons for the boys, leftover from an event they'd had that day. Nico latched onto them almost immediately and has been carrying a pair back and forth from my parents' house all week. Today we had to stop by the consignment shop and the grocery before we went home. The wind was kicking up, and as I was putting Elliott in his carseat after leaving the consignment shop, it sucked Nico's red heart-shaped balloon right out of the car and whipped it away, trailing the small plastic dinosaur I'd tied to the ribbon as a weight. Nico burst into tears as we watched it sail across the mall parking lot across the street and then dip out of sight. I buckled him in as he cried, asking me how we were going to get the balloon back, who was going to get it for us, would someone find it and bring it to him at Grandma's house? I kept telling him no, buddy, I'm sorry, your balloon is gone, we can't catch it. I looked after it one last time as I shut the door and saw it, briefly, low to the ground, near the video store about 100 yards away. I threw my things into the car and tore off in pursuit, hoping for an impossible bit of luck. And sure enough, in the lee of the video store, tucked away out of the wind, was Nico's bright red balloon, resting on its miniature ankylosaurus. I leapt from the car and snatched it before the wind could take it again, and brought it back to Nico with a cheer. I couldn't believe we'd actually managed to get it back.
I wound the ribbons around the gear shift until there was no chance of another escape. We drove to the grocery just down the street, chatting happily about our good fortune, but once we arrived I realized that my wallet was missing. So we scrambled back to the spot by the video store where we'd retrieved the balloon and then back to the consignment shop...where my wallet lay abandoned in the parking space where we'd been. Two awesome turns of luck within one half-hour? I'll certainly take it.
Reading: The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray
Playing: the driving mix I made for my road trip