Well, the car rider line isn't going so well.
I decided that this year I'd follow the rules and get in the stupid line and wait like everyone else, versus parking and grabbing my child and going. Yesterday was the first day of this. They called Big Kid's name 7 times before asking me to park in a handicapped spot and jump out and find him.
So we had a good talk after that about listening so he'd hear his name and we tried again today. I got there FIFTY MINUTES ahead of time (this is required if you don't want to wait in an insanely long line) and I was the 7th car in line. Finally the kids were brought out and I watched Big Kid hop up and down and wave at the similar-colored SUV in front of mine. After several minutes of this, the driver rolled down her window and Big Kid awkwardly realized it wasn't me. Then he spotted me and began squinting, waving and hopping in my direction, with me holding my hand in the "STOP" position so he would remember to wait until they told him which numbered spot to go to in order to get into my car.
There are 6 numbered spots. I'm number 7. The lady announces for him to go to spot #1. He's sitting less than 10 feet from me and spot #1 is clear on the other side of the car rider area, completely out of sight of me. After lots of waving and repeated instructions into the microphone, he reluctantly went, with a backwards glance at me. The current round of 1-6 takes forever though and he's waiting there a while, with me still in spot #7.
Suddenly I see him running back towards me. An adult reaches out and grabs him, turning him around as he angrily points to me and tries to make a break for it. I wave for him to go with her and he jerks his shoulder from her hand and sullenly follows her back to spot #1, where I pull up moments later.
The aid opens the door and cheerfully says, "He made it! See you tomorrow!" She closes the door behind him and I ask, "How did school go?"
Shaking with what could only be described as rage, he replied, "FINE! Until da LAST PART! I'm neber bein' a car rider again. Dat lady was tryin' to put me in a stranger's car and I was tryin' to tell her dat my mom's car was right dere and she MADE ME go to spot #1. TO A STRANGER'S CAR!! I 'scaped when dey weren't lookin' and sneaked back to you and she caught me and made me go back. I'll neber do it again. Unless I get a moustache and maybe some glasses so dey won't recognize me."
As I snorted back laughter, I explained how they were doing their jobs and how their car rider system worked and why they did it that way. "For safety reasons," I concluded.
"Well, puttin' me in a stranger's car doesn't seem safe to me. Takin' me from my mudder doesn't seem safe to me. DOES DAT SEEM SAFE TO YOU?"
"They weren't trying to put you in a stranger's car. Even if they accidentally did try, a stranger would realize you weren't hers and wouldn't take you. If she did take you, I'd see you drive off and chase her down and get you back. Seriously--it's safe. I promise. It will go smoother next time."
"As long as I get a moustache and glasses. And maybe a hat. Den dey won't know it's me."
So, I'd say the car rider ladies are officially on his shit list. You pretty much don't get off of that list either. The McDonald's near our house ran out of Teeny Beanie Baby Happy Meal toys and still had the advertisement up and he still comes unglued over them and their false promises any time we dare go through the drive thru.
I'm thinking it might be in everyone's best interest if I just park and grab him, so he doesn't have to lurk in the car rider line wearing a Groucho Marx disguise, and for the safety of the unsuspecting car rider line ladies.