Snow day!  In celebration of the fact that I don’t have to do the school run, dressed in my flannel PJ pants, a hoodie, and my husband’s loafers from the mudroom, here is my favorite nightmare tale of what can go wrong when you’re not dressed properly to drop the kids in the morning.

One day in December, late getting her child to school, my friend Eliza (not her real name) had rushed out of the house to the minivan wearing only her husband’s long flannel shirt, in which she had slept, and a pair of fuzzy socks that she was pretending were slippers. 

She pulled up in front of the elementary school, her child was having trouble collecting all her stuff, and Eliza turned off the engine to help.  A queue of cars lined up behind her, waiting to pull up to the designated drop-off-zone.  When Eliza turned the key to get going, the car wouldn’t start.  It was dead as a doornail, and there she was, nothing but a plaid shirt between her and the elements.  Still, people behind her were starting to get miffed, so she exited the minivan and started waving them around.

The weather was cold.  Eliza is, as she puts it, “chesty.”  The dads in the queue must have felt it was their lucky day.

Learning of the crisis, another mom threw her coat over Eliza, and a tow truck was called.  Instead of asking the tow truck driver to take her home to change, Eliza (not an inhibited person) rode to the fix-it shop dressed in the sleepshirt, socks, and her friend’s coat.  The tow-truck driver deposited her and her minivan at the fix-it shop and left.

Calling her husband, Eliza learned that he had ordered a new tire for the minivan, and could she arrange to have that put on while she was there?  Sure, why not?  The mechanics didn’t know about any tire being ordered.  Calling her husband again, Eliza learned he had meant the fix-it shop ACROSS THE HIGHWAY.  So she did something heroic.  She went slopping across the four lane highway to get the new tire, which she then ROLLED back across four lanes, giving new meaning to stopping traffic.

Needless to say, her fuzzy socks were ruined, as was her reputation for being a super together mom. 

Moral of the story:  Always leave time to get properly dressed and made-up when doing the school run.  (I recognize this is impossible unless you are one of those always perfectly coiffed and lipsticked and wardrobed moms we envy and deplore.)  Because you never know when the unexpected will happen.


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