Thursday, August 03, 2006

My New Boyfriend

So, on a complete lark this morning, I decided to take the kids up to The City.

I'd read in a diarist that I'd found on the front page that there was some "event" happening up at City Hall at noon, and it sounded like a fun thing to peek in on. I had no idea what exactly was up, but I thought it couldn't hurt.

So at 10:30 I piled the kids into the car (up until that point, Ken and I had been talking - he was working from home this morning - and I'd said I'd take the kids to Bair Island to get them out of his hair) stuck some sand toys into the Pilot (in case we ended up heading out to the beach afterwards), and zipped up to the city.

The main thought, though, was to take the kids to this play park that Nate had found back in June when we were waiting for Skip to finish rehearsing with the symphony. It's this cool dome thing made out of rope. And we got some good play time in on it:

But our first order of business (after finding a completly ROCKIN' free parking space) was to head down to City Hall.

We walked around, and had a little civics lesson from some toothless crazy-lady, on how Lincoln's Spirit lives in this statue (because LOOK at his eyes, they follow you!) and keeps San Francisco free of slavery, or something, while I was taking this photo:

And then the kids started getting whiny, and antsy, and there really was no sign of this 'special event' that I'd read about (only cursorily, alas) in this diary that had been up on the OD front page for a nanosecond, so I was thinking that I probably dreamed it, and it was probably all for the best, because the last thing someone needs is to write about some good work that they're doing, and then have some crazy-lady OD-stalker show up going "I read about this in your Online Diary, and now I'm stalking you. Here, meet my kids."

So then there was the spectre of walking around the ENTIRE huge City Hall again, and curiousity got the better of me.

I wonder if we could just CUT THROUGH the building....

Nate was whining so loud, I thought someone was going to call security.

"I don't want to."
"My legs hurt."
"I don't want to climb the stairs."
"My arm is tired."

The list goes on and on.

But I peeked in the door, and there was this crowd of people going through this one metal detector, and a security guard sitting at a second detector all alone.

He waved at me, and called me over.

"Um..." I started, all idiot-like, "Are we allowed to be in here?" I asked.

And while he was answering, he was waving Skip, Kelly, and Nate through the metal detector, and handing me back my purse, "Not only can you come in, you're welcome to take pictures, too!" he exclaimed.

I guess they deal with more ignoramus-esque tourists than me. Perhaps on a daily basis. So kind. So knowledgeable.

And before I knew it, we were inside the cool marble halls, and the kids were running on ahead.

Children were singing in the distance. We followed the sounds.

And entered the rotunda, where the sound rolled around, and echoed, and was superb. Angelic.

There was some special event, for sure. It was INSIDE. Who knew? I'd been looking outside for it.

I looked around. There were two rows of chairs laid out in a circle, and the stairs going up to the upper floors seemed to be acting like a stage. I think it was some African-American heritage thing, involving children. Kelly pulled on my sleeve. "Mom," she whispered, a grin on her face "everyone's black except us!"

I looked around. She was mostly right. But there was one other guy who wasn't black. I tried not to look lost, and when he looked over, I gave him a nice "do you feel as conspicuous as I do?" sheepish grin.

And then the woman who was emcee-ing the event said "And now, ladies and gentlemen, our Mayor, Gavin Newsom!" and the applause burst out, and the guy that I was grinning at stepped up to the mike.

Ok, dumb bunny? That's me.

I'm just glad I didn't say something like "Are you Canadian? Because you look REALLY familiar!"

But you know, he's really quite a hot property in person.

Ladies and Gentlemen, my new boyfriend, Mayor Gavin Newsom.

(please excuse the crappy photo. No flash and a teeny lens on the camera)

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