It was a hot, muggy, stir-crazy day. The yard and window boxes called for tending. Instead of staying in to overponder the "master garden plan," or bemoaning my inability to hop on my bike and do a big trailer haul, I loaded up Miguel's diaper bag and searched the phone-book for a garden center that would require no more than one bus transfer: Farmer's Market Garden Center near Irving Park and Elston.
We took the Kimball bus 20 blocks north to Bell Plaine and walked 6 short blocks west until we saw a micropolis of greenery shimmering across Elston. I assumed my protective stance (body between oncoming traffic and stroller, arms stretched to keep the stroller going straight--why I think this helps, I don't know. I just hate pushing my child into distracted car traffic in front of me), and picked my way across the busy street.
I crammed his stroller with herbs and flowers for our window boxes and arranged to have a huge load of soil, mulch and compost delivered. It was a flat (and not inconsequential) fee, so I kept upping my order to get my purchase amount to delivery fee ratio in harmony. It's all stuff we need for the "master plan" anyway. I think.
Miguel was in a fine, but sleepy mood, for which I was very grateful. After waiting 30 minutes in the midday sun for the bus, I gave up, realizing the last place I wanted to be was on a very crowded bus (which it would be once it rolled around) with a stroller bulging with sleeping baby and plants. So I walked the final 20 blocks home, assuming another protective stance: trying to keep the stroller angled so the sun wouldn't bake his little legs. He napped the whole way.