When I first took Elaine to pre-school last September, the teachers walked us through what the school year would hold. The grand finale would be in May, a field trip to ride the trolley along the river and have a picnic at the park.
Unbelievably, May is almost over, and field trips are here. Last week, Lucy went with her class an hour and a half away to a city zoo. She was so excited and bounced around for weeks, talking about the zoo trip. Each time, Elaine would chime in loudly, "Well, I am going to ride in Mommy's car and then ride on a trolley and go on a picnic!" Nothing could compare to the glories of that, not even the first grade zoo trip.
Every morning for at least the last month, she greets me in the bathroom with, "Is today the day of the trolley ride?"
Finally, finally, the day came--oh wait, not before a special trip to the grocery store to pick out Lunchables, which is what they both wanted for their field trip lunches, even though Lunchables are the biggest rip-off in the world. Whoever invented tiny portions of crackers, cheese, lunchmeat, a drink, and a treat stuck in a box and sold to sucker parents for two plus bucks apiece--my hat is off to you. I could make them the exact same thing minus the box for a fraction of the cost, but apparently that is completely different and not as fun. But...it's a special thing, so OK.
Here are Elaine and her friend Lily, waiting for the trolley to come (apparently they kept trying to start it and the engine flooded, so they needed to battery operate it. Or something. So we were waiting for awhile.)
The ride downtown and along the river. I have to say, this is the nicest bunch of pre-schoolers and parents. Everybody was happy and got along, waving to passersby. One little boy's great-grandma lives in a house along the river--she knew our class was riding the trolley today, and when we rode by, she opened her front door, wearing her little housecoat and waved at us. She was extremely cute...how fun to watch your great-grandson ride the trolley.
After the trolley ride was over, we all thanked the drivers and headed to the park to play and picnic. The other children looked longingly at Elaine's Lunchable. I swear, they're such a scam, but I guess kids just can't resist. Elaine and Lily and Elaine's other good buddy Vincent sat on a bench together and traded their pretzels and crackers and chips. I think Vincent, who is adorable and has dimples too, was angling for Elaine's Reese's peanut butter cup, but she leaned over and said sweetly to him, "I'll share this part with you next time."
Then they rolled happily down the hill together.
This has been such a happy year for my youngest girl--I can't believe it's over, and next year she'll be heading to a new school. Sigh.
One of those bittersweet days...