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The Mufasa bridge

Submitted by on Sunday, 1 June 2008 No Comment

Originally published May 15, 2007, thehive.modbee.com

To say I’m not a patient person is like saying Bill Gates has sold a little software. I want to get everything done 10 minutes ago, and I hate waiting. It’s a nature vs. nurture question: Did I get into journalism because I’m a speed freak, or am I a speed freak because I’m a journalist.

But while I’m impatient, I’m not stupid. I take Ninth Street to work, and usually I’ll wait out any train toddling along B Street. The reasoning: By the time I detour, the train will be gone and I wouldn’t have saved any time.

Thursday, though, I was running late and a train was using B Street for long-term parking. So I turned around and eventually wound up on Seventh Street.

Minutes later, Big Guy was spellbound. “Mommy, Mommy, MOMMY!!!  Look! It’s Mufasa!”

And in a 3-year-old’s mind, it was indeed the “Lion King” perched in all his glory on the south end of the Seventh Street Bridge.

OK, so maybe he looked more shopworn than glorious, but I would, too, if I’d been hanging out since 1916. Still, the Seventh Street Bridge is the coolest thing about driving around Modesto, and it was the first time Big Guy had seen it.

I’m amazed he didn’t want to get out and talk to it to see if it sounded like James Earl Jones. And as we were halfway across, “The Circle of Life” came on the radio. Is that serendipity or what?

“Where’s Simba?  Is Simba here? What about Scarf?” Big Guy chattered excitedly. “Can we go this way tomorrow? I don’t like the white bridge anymore.”

It occurred to me that I had twisted and turned my way to a new motivational strategy.

“Well, maybe. It takes longer to get to school on the Mufasa Bridge than on the white bridge, so if you want to see the Mufasa Bridge, you’ll need to get ready really fast in the mornings.”

I’d like to say it’s been smooth sailing since, but that hasn’t been exactly the case. Big Guy still hates getting up – can’t say I blame him – and still takes his dear sweet time getting it in gear. But one mention of the Mufasa Bridge dramatically speeds up the painful process of getting him clothed, shod and out the door.

So as much as it kills me little speed-freak, efficiency-nut soul, I’ll keep  taking the long way to work for as long as it’s still amusing.

Which might be a while. This evening, Big Guy was convinced he’d spotted Scar on the north end. We still have two lions to name. 

Copyright 2007 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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