So on Sunday, we rode a train. Now Hubba-hubba and I are true native Southern Californians in the fact that we tend to eschew public transportation. It is not that we have anything against public transportation. It is just that here in the LA area, the public transit systems are so poor, they don't actually take anyone anywhere they would like to go.
Say for instance, the MetroLink "Green Line." It runs from Norwalk (a city with absolutely no distinguishing features in semi-Southeast LA) to what they try to tell you is Los Angeles International Airport. Except, unlike great cities like Chicago, where you simply ride a little conveyor belt out of your terminal, and there you are right on the El platform, it doesn't actually take you to the airport. No, no, it takes you a couple of miles from the airport, where you and your luggage are herded aboard a shuttle to take you to LAX. At least they have the decency not to charge you for the shuttle, but still. Suffice it to say, not many people take the Green Line to LAX.
Wait, back to our story.
MetroLink, which is just one august body of the Medusa-like agencies that attempt to patchwork a public transportation system here, runs what they call "Summerlink" trains. This one line runs from the godforsaken city of Rialto (which may as well be out in the desert) all the way down to Oceanside, with a bunch of stops in between. One of them is the San Clemente Pier*, and we decided to meet my grandparents down there for lunch and whatever frivolity ensued.
We also figured that Mr. Personality would get a big kick out of being on a train. He likes trains in theory, so we felt that putting it into actual practice would be something that would propel us into the realm of model parents.
We get on the last train going south, and it is fairly empty. The cars have technically three levels, and we decide to hang out on the top one. Most of the seats are sets of four, with two facing each other. Some of them have little tables in between. I wanted to feel special, so I insisted we sit with a table.
So there I was, feeling very special indeed, when I dropped the cap to my water bottle. It rolled under Hubba-hubba's right foot. I asked him if he could please get it for me. He reached under the table at the exact same time Mr. Personality bent his head down just to be nosy.
There goes Mr. Personality's eye bashed into the table. Much screaming and wailing ensued, and to be honest, he was perfectly justified. In no time flat, he had a huge welt underneath his eye, and we desperately tried to force him to let us apply our cold water bottles to it. Nothing doing, of course. So the poor little guy is getting this huge shiner, sniffling in pain, while the his parents did what all model parents do when their child is hurt.
We fought. Oh to be sure, we fought in sotto voce hisses, but there was no doubt in anyone's mind that it was an argument.
"Way to go, thanks for dropping the cap."
"Listen, don't blame me for what you did."
"If you hadn't dropped that cap, none of this would have happened."
"If you had paid attention to what you were doing, none of this would have happened."
And so on and so forth. I am positive all the other passengers thought they had hit the jackpot having us as travel companions.
Somehow we managed to make a great day out of it after all. But it did seem like a lot of people were looking at Mr. Personality's eye and then conducting a whispered conversation behind their hands. I'm sure they were just noting how cute he is. Right?
*If you happen to click the link, just imagine a billion more people. Oh, and do you see that little thatched-roof thingy kind of on the right hand side. We sat right there.