(This is a guest post by Sandy’s mom Amy. We recently realized that someday our kids will really love to hear the stories of their parents’ youths. There are only so many memories that we can relate to them ourselves. So we’re leaning our parents to write them down for us. Hopefully this will the be the first of many posts from them, about their families, and about the making thereof.)
Even at Ezra’s age, Sandy managed to trick me. In the fall of 1978, on our way from LA to San Francisco, we decided to stop in Anaheim, to introduce our toddler son to Disneyland. After several ‘no vacancy’ signs, we found the perfect desert motel, complete with grey cement floors and concrete walls topped with clearstory windows. The lack of a view was balanced by one redeeming feature: air conditioners loud enough to drown out nearby highway noise.
We all woke with Sandy at 6am the next morning, eager for our one day with The Mouse. Seeing me scurrying around preparing for our outing, Sandy took his opportunity to explore the bathroom, and Mom’s emergency all-medications-a-good-mom-might-need-on-a-trip bag. By the time I found him, he had unzipped the bag, examined its contents, and was merrily chugging the cough syrup.
Panic, I’m happy to remember, did not ensue. Instead, we found the Anaheim Yellow Pages beneath the Gideon Bible and called the local emergency room, where the following conversation began:
Nurse: “Poison control.”
Mom: “My 22 month old just drank a half-bottle of Robitussin. I don’t know how he got the cap off!”
Nurse: “Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha! They’re the only ones who can!”
Mom (feeling slightly better. After all, if the nurse was laughing, how bad could it be?): “Will he be OK?”
Nurse: “Oh sure. It’ll make him drowsy, but after he sleeps a few hours he should have no problems.”
Mom: “But we’re only here for the day. This is our only time for Disneyland!”
Nurse (more laughter): “Well, when you get in the park, a pinch on his inner thigh should wake him. He might be groggy for a bit, but that shouldn’t last long. Have fun!”
An hour later we pulled into Disney’s hundred-acre parking lot, finding a space among dozens of cars expelling overly excited families. Amidst shouts of “stop running!” and “stay near us!”, Sandy’s parents loaded a limp, snoring little boy into his umbrella stroller. Once inside the park we pinched, laughed at Sandy’s bewildered ‘where am I?’ face, and all was well in Mickeyland.