School's out here in the city of dreams, which means that all three of my regular jobs weren't happening, and instead, I spent the week with Ms. Emma. We had a grand old time. Here are some of the things that happened:
We went to one of the Met's family programs, which turned out to be about Greco-Roman art. Coincidentally, we had spent the previous afternoon sketching gods and goddesses from her D'Aulaires book, so she was well prepared and eager to answer questions. When the educator mentioned the riddle of the Sphinx, Emma knew both the question (what walks on four feet in the morning, two feet in the afternoon, and three feet at night?) and the answer (a human).
We had planned to go to the Central Park Zoo in hopes of catching a sea lion feeding, but abandoned our plan while waiting for the bus because it was much too cold and windy. Instead, we headed for an old standby-- Museum of the Moving Image. I ran into lots of old pals, Emma and her brother made some awesome stop-motion animation, and we all watched Wallace & Gromit: The Wrong Trousers.
We played with Sprout. She and Emma got along famously. Emma pet her and brushed her and whispered, "Hello my name is Emma, I'm not sure what I smell like to you..." They ran with each other up and down the block, which had the benefit of tiring them both out. Sprout inspired Emma to start a dog spa, and she already came up with the first treatment, "Shih Tzu Shiatsu."
We had a playdate with a lovely child, who unfortunately came as a package deal with her insufferable mother. This lady shared with me her unsolicited thoughts on race ("If my child dated a black man, I wouldn't mind if he was like Obama"), pop culture ("Britney Spears is an example of what happens when you give white trash money"), Perego versus Maclaren strollers & iPhones versus Blackberrys (both an excuse to mention the dollar amounts she paid) and my personal favorite, foreign policy ("I know you're not supposed to support genocide, but I'm this close to saying-- just blow the Middle East up!" and "We can't negiotiate with terroists, because they want everyone to be like them... and I don't want to wear a burka"). Needless to say, it was difficult and upsetting to be around this pathetic lady, but I took a cue from Emma, who earlier that day had proclaimed, "patience is my best virtue."