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Where I realize that not all trips for ice cream are created equally

by John on June 18th, 2012

Saturday was a fine day. Duffy and I traded off watching the kids and getting yardwork done, meaning that I actually got a little bit of sun (which, I hope, will mean that I don’t burn the very instant that I get to the beach in July). There was some napping that happened. All in all it was a pretty good day, and the weather was wonderful.

After dinner, we decided to head out for ice cream — there is a little “mom & pop” place a few miles from the house, and it seemed a great way to get out on the bikes. I have a two-toddler bike trailer that converts into a jogging stroller that I attach to my hybrid bike. I can’t really go fast when I’m towing the kids around in it, but I can tow the kids around as I bike, and that’s well worth the trade-off. So, I set up the trailer, and I did a quick safety check on my & my wife’s bikes before we started getting the kids ready.

The rule is, if you’re on a bike, you wear a helmet — there are no exceptions allowed. Pennsylvania state law allows me to cart my kids about in the trailer without their helmets, but I’m not about to start that — if they’re being carted as I cycle, they wear their helmets.

Well, CJ put his on, and he put his on happily. He was promised ice cream for working with us, and that was good. Leila . . . didn’t.

We got her helmet on her, and we got her into the trailer, but then she finagled the helmet off. And she steadfastly refused to put it back on (I think the pink helmet might have clashed with her ensemble). So, I made the decision that Duffy & CJ should head out for ice cream . . . only the trailer was attached to my bike, and, well, there is a pretty massive height difference between my wife & myself, so her riding my bike was out of the question. Duffy decided to stay home with Leila.

So, CJ and I rode to get ice cream — Leila screamed as we left, and CJ screamed right back (they may be siblings, but they are best friends, and CJ did not feel right heading out for ice cream without his sister about). Fortunately, CJ’s screaming soon drifted away as he got into the whole “going on a ride” thing.

But, we got to the ice cream shop and he cried for La, and he cried for his mom. And neither of them were there.

The crying, of course, didn’t last too long, though, because there was ice cream.

I lifted my son and had him point out the ice cream he wanted — S’more, and I ordered him a kid’s cone. For myself, I ordered a cone of Salted Caramel.

When the guy behind the counter handed me the cone for CJ, though, I balked — it was significantly larger than I was anticipating . . . it turns out that there are “mini cones” that are given to toddlers, and then kid cones, for those just a little bit older. Most people at the shop would see the toddler & ask “do you mean a mini cone?” but this guy didn’t.

I asked him to change it out, as it was too much ice cream for the kid, but he responded that he already scooped it . . . so I paid more than I’m used to paying and walked outside with two ice cream cones.

Only CJ wanted my ice cream cone — and I couldn’t eat his because I’m Defective. Somehow, in his grabbing for my cone, and my trying to avoid getting ice cream melted all over myself, my cone ended up on the ground. The mulched ground.

But, it’s ice cream, so I picked off what I could . . . but my salted caramel was, um, fiberific.

Upon seeing my cone hit the ground, CJ no longer had any interest in eating what I had ordered, and grew quite interested in the cone he had picked out. It was vanilla ice cream with bits of marshmallow, chocolate, and graham cracker, and he would pick out bits of stuff, and then realize that the ice cream, itself, was tasty, so he’d take a big lick, before heading back to pick out little bits.

And the bugger ate every last bite.

Then he cried for mom again. So we went back into the ice cream shop to get her a pint of ice cream (chocolate ice cream with peanut butter cookie dough) and biked home as fast as we could.

Home is uphill from the ice cream shop.

Really, I shouldn’t complain — there was ice cream, and I got a bike ride, and my son sure was cute eating his cone . . . but hell, I’ll complain if I want to. 🙂

  1. Jani permalink

    Your stories never cease to make me smile.

  2. Oh, La… silly girl. A helmet is always a fair trade off for being taken out for ice cream.

    What did Duffy’s side of the story look like? Because all I kept thinking about was her trapped at home with a scorned toddler.

    • It was not pleasant. she better fucking cut it out because I want to bike this summer.
      On the upside, we had a delightful Father’s Day dinner followed by a happy trip for ice cream.

  3. Again with the salted caramel. And this time it lands in the mulch. You really are trying to kill me. I’m a little upset with CJ at this moment.

    And wouldn’t you know we had a similar thing with Iris the other day. Ice cream was promised to those that ate their dinners. Iris did not eat a good dinner. Not even close. So hubs and Sam set off to ice cream and Iris was screamcrying out the window as they got into the car. (No bikes in my story.) Hubs actually called me from the driveway, considering relenting. I told him to just go already. She’d get over it. It took some time though. She’s a beast!

  4. I might be willing to eat salted caramel ice cream even if it did have chunks of mulch stuck to it.

  5. I am almost too distracted by the salted caramel to say this but I’m going to control myself because I simply MUST congratulate you on your choice to always have your kids wear helmets.

    Whether they want to or not.

    Good dad. Good mom. Setting an example and holding firm.

    (Also: Salted caramel? I’m so jealous. Still.)

  6. Didn’t you have an awesome trip to this same ice cream store last month? Maybe you should give us a monthly update on “this month the ice cream store went like this” post.

    Kidding. I ate salted caramel Sunday night – YumMe.

  7. and now i want salted caramel ice cream. YUM!

  8. Don’t you have those moments where you envision going out like a family and having an appropriate response from the kids as they sing your praises and say how awesome you are? But then it doesn’t happen and you want to cry in a corner?

    Oh wait.

    🙂 That’s super sweet that he has such a camaraderie with La.

  9. Ah, the salted caramel. With mulch. Bummer.

    Really, it’s not an excursion if there’s no screaming. At least in my household.

    Conductor On The Complain Train

  10. Ha. Oh, I hear you. Nothing is ever straightforward. Ever.

    I have a friend who can still haul a*$ with the trailer on her bike. Me? I’m barely moving. I like it best when the trailer is on Mark’s bike! But I should not complain, either, because at least the trailer allows us to take family bike rides.

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