Anyone who knows me, and my issues with waiting in lines, will completely understand where I am coming from here. I Don’t Do the Drive Thru…not for fast food, not for ticket sales, not for coffee…..ESPECIALLY not for coffee…and most certainly not for school!
UH UH! NO WAY! NOT MY THANG! never has been, never will be!
It may work for many, not me…
Now, since Bella has been in Montessori for 3 years now, two campuses, there has always been the Parent Drop Off/Drive Thru. It was in place long before me, and will be in place long after. Sure, it is convenient for most, but not this Daddy-O. In the 3 years since she has been enrolled I tried it…ONCE! And only then, because a certain staff member kept belittling me for not “doing as the other parents do”. Personally, I believe she was insulted that I may not have trusted her judgement in protecting my child. Perhaps that was a bit of it…I mean c’mon, we all know how distracted parents can be while driving…let alone idling in a wait line of other parent “controlled” automobiles. (yup, road rage can and does happen in the drive thru lane – albeit subtly).
Some may think me an over controlling parent, paranoid for my kids safety…but…seriously?! It is MY decision…my love…my daughter! The simple truth is: I LOVE walking my daughter into school. We hold hands, we hug and kiss before she strolls through the gates. We say “I Love You” to each other and wish the “Best of Day”. I appreciate and refuse to relinquish these special moments.
I park a block away, and we walk. Because we walk, we have been able to have intelligent conversations, skip and be silly…and in general, spend a tiny bit more quality time together.
Ironically, we tense up as we approach the drive thru. (remember, we all know how parental driving habits can be), as we know we have to watch for cars coming out of the drive. Yup, we’ve almost been run over (at least our toes) quite a few times. Parents looking left, as we approach right, and driving out, before looking both ways. It happens often. We even have a code for one parent in particular. We say “freeze” and wait for him to drive out…we know his car…we know his face…and his manner of dress. Frankly, Bella notices him usually before I do.
All that said, we have other…more special reasons…for walking into school. We get to see the sites, the flowers, the butterflies…and yes, the bugs. Bella delights in discovering new things…everyday!
This past school year, on the new campus, Bella and I have had the good fortune of “meeting” an elderly couple who live on the street where we park. Every day, just after 3PM, we see him holding the door open for his wife, gently guiding her into the seat. (Bella was so excited recently, when they bought a new, cool lime colored car). They drive off, slowing down as they pass. Bella & I getting into our own car, the smiles broaden, the arms go up and out the windows..and we all wave to one another.
This happens every day. It has become a tradition. We all wait…wait to see one another so we can wave. Bella is thrilled she has such “cool friends who are friendly”…though we have never actually met. Just smiles, waves and cars, passing.
One day, Bella had the best idea…to “write a letter to the nice older people who wave at me.” She wanted them to know of her, before the school year ended. She was concerned they may forget her before starting second grade in the new year.
Papa and I did a bit of research, acquired their married name and home address, and now…(she is making certain they will remember her)
“Dear Mr. and Mrs. ****,
My Names is Bella *****-*******,
I am the girl that you wave at everytime at 3:00. Thank you for waving and making me smile everyday. I love your new car”…
She goes on to describe her life with her Daddy & Papa, and her two dogs Sam & Scuzi…and says she looks forward to seeing them again, soon.
LIFE IS GOOD!