Panera.

So I thought I’d take the three of us to the local Panera for a little Monday evening wind-down. We’d perhaps enjoy a little treat, have a soft drink or iced tea and just relax a little bit as we played with our gadgets and the like.

Those plans were abolished when I spotted something ahead of us in line.

Two children. One stroller. One balloon.

The mother is oblivious. The child is in the stroller and is screaming at the top of its lungs. When the oblivious mother is reveling in her obliviousness, the child with the balloon hits the child in the stroller with the balloon. The kid yells louder, loudER, LOUDER, I tell you. To calm the child, the mother shakes a plastic glass full of ice in the child’s face and makes odd noises. She doesn’t make a tsk tsk sound or try to calm the child, she shakes ice in it’s face. The child is now yelling “maw maw” and then screaming.

Playland. It’s just around the corner.

I suppose I was a brat when I was a kid. My sister and I were often left out in the car while Mom did her grocery shopping. Matched up with our cousins once removed, the five kids left in the car once got so loud that a woman came over from another car and told us we were very bad children. My cousin once removed retaliated by sounding the horn. Constantly. Then we were quiet once she walked away. So the truth of the matter is, kids will be kids and I get that. I also get why my mother left us out in the car while she did the grocery shopping.

She didn’t want us to blow the roof off the P&C (grocery store).

People that were seated around the ice-rattling mother and her balloon bopping child with screaming mimi are vacating the premises like it’s nobody’s business. The guys behind the counter are talking about the screaming kid. It can’t be good for business.

Maybe we can relax at home after all.

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