Daniel had the day off from school on Veteran’s Day. He was pretty good in the morning, so we did lunch together at Burger King. Burger King is considered “fast food”, though sometimes I question why. It took fifteen minutes to get our order. We sat down in the booth together and I told Daniel we would need to get going soon.
“How come we’re always such in a rush?” he asked. To be fair, we’re not always in a rush, but it seems that way. Daniel has “too” speeds: too fast and too slow. Invariably, when we are in a hurry, Daniel downshifts and there are whole geologic ages between bites, despite my growing impatient entreaties to speed things along. Daniel lazily took a small bite from his cheeseburger and mulled it over in his mouth before starting to chew approximately 200 times and then swallowing. I think I ate my entire meal in that time and had a few moments extra to review the coupons in the free ad paper.
“It’s a holiday,” he said. “You shouldn’t have to rush around on a holiday.” I have to agree; you shouldn’t have to rush around. All too often we do. Thanksgiving will be a rush to finish up all my work and get packed and jump in the car to drive to Michigan. Christmas will include running through stores at the last minute, picking up this and that, getting the tree set up and wrapping presents in the wee hours. There are moments – of course – during each holiday where everyone can finally just sit and relax, talk and laugh and enjoy each other’s company. Those are the moments that are special; what make the whole holiday experience worth the effort.
Unfortunately, while Daniel had Veteran’s Day off, it was not a holiday for me. So, that wishful thinking had to remain that: wishful. And I spent the next 45 minutes of my lunch hour begging Daniel to please… hurry… up.