Perhaps you will excuse my bragging today and let me tell you how wealthy I am. Oh, my riches are not revealed by checkbook, CDs or stock portfolio, and were you to scrutinize our balance sheet, you would look askance at my claim, perhaps tagging me as lacking in veracity, and a tad on the goofy side. You would be wrong, dead on wrong.
I persist in my assertion of extreme riches and point to last evening as documentation of such claim. We met in Temecula, a close to half way point between San Diego and Crestline to celebrate Andrew's 35th birthday. It was a small group who could make it on this Tuesday night–close family, and Sharon and Adam, Andrew's best friend in the whole world. Adam's youngsters, Andrew's four, and a three year old cousin thrown in reveled in the place that Shawnna had chosen for the celebration. Lumpy's Sweet BBQ was the name of the joint–cheerful people who had set about pots of unshelled peanuts, making it known that accepted protocol in this fine place was the pitching of spent peanut shells onto the painted cement floor. The youngsters loved the opportunity to cast aside Miss Manners training for an evening, and many tiny peanut-mounded-up hands were seen. Giggling, the children poked their mouths full, then dutifully tossed the shells to the floor. Occasionally they gave a firm stomp to finalize the deal.
The presents were simple ones. Lumpy's closing time was 8:00, so a few minutes before the hour struck, we dug into our purses and wallets to leave a generous tip for these delightful people. But we weren't through partying, so we got into our cars and drove a few blocks to a Starbucks for the grand finale of the celebration.
We had been home only a few minutes when the phone rang. "You and Dad get home all right, Mom?" Andrew quizzed. "Just wanted to check on you."
Yeah, I'm rich. Don't think otherwise.