{ Monday, December 02, 2002 }

Little Girl Alone...

The phone woke me up twice this morning before my sister.

"Get up. I'm going to drop you off downtown. You still haven't seen downtown. You leave tomorrow. Last chance. Get up."
[non committal groaning from me]
"It's so easy. I'm going to take you downtown and drop you off. Surely you can manage to take the subway back."
[more non committal groaning from me]
"Let's go."

I got up. I put my contacts in. I brushed my teeth. I ate a hard roll. I fixed my hair and put on make-up. I got dressed. Shelly babbled incessantly at me. I don't know if you've ever seen two more directionally challenged people in your life than my sister and I. The process of her telling me where I "wanted" to go downtown and how to get to and from the subway station was pretty hilarious I'm sure. Except that I was having visions of being lost in downtown and how my sister won't turn her cell phone on...

I spent a few hours downtown. As long as my legs would hold up to shopping. I got what I was headed for. I ate at the place her friend kept telling me to eat at all week. Jewelry, Fabric and Fashion districts. I managed to trot through some of all three. I stopped a bike cop and asked for directions to the subway and I was going in the correct direction. I managed to get on the correct subway car. I managed to get off at the right stop. I managed to find my way back to her apartment.

Where I learned that I now officially have a ride home from the airport tomorrow. And I got some more information on this college thing...

So, I have to get up at 5 am tomorrow. Shelly also has to get up at 5 am tomorrow. We have to leave the apartment at five actually. If you've ever actually tried to wake one of us up, you'll understand how this might be a problem...

Last night... I got some insight into my sister's psyche. Some more insight. Apparently she thinks she didn't have a priveledged upbringing. Hi, we were members of the Country Club. Dance Lessons, etiquette classes, private school, private art classes, private German lessons, a car on her sixteenth birthday, trips abroad, an allowance even after she got a job, private college.... I fail to see where she was deprived.

She seemed to think that something was "rough" about her childhood in The City of Beautiful Homes because my mother doesn't believe in dishwashers, air conditioning, cable television, remote controlled anything, video games, children having telephones in their rooms, preservatives, cereals with sugar in the first three ingredients, any beverage that isn't milk, water or 100% juice, owning movies or many other wonders of modern science and technology.

Oh and I think also because Mom believed whole heartedly in her right to censor any and all media her children were exposed to. We were allowed to read anything we wanted, but television or movies or music involving "parental guidance" anywhere in the credits required Mom to view them first and approve them. Which I think is absolutely fair. Parents are supposed to take responsibility for making sure their children aren't exposed to things they don't want. Apparently Shelly is still bitter that she couldn't watch certain movies with her friends.

I think it's interesting that where I see our childhood (we're thirteen months apart and we shared a bedroom until I was thirteen, another thing Mom doesn't believe in... children having their own rooms, it was "our" childhood) as privledged because I never wanted for a material object and I was given every oppurtunity to learn and express myself with the added bonus of not becoming dependent on stuff.... Shelly sees it as deprived because she didn't have the stuff in her house that her friends had.

posted by mary ann 5:03 PM