Monday, August 20, 2007

The Revenge of Dora

Despite the heat, we took Gabi to a birthday party Saturday afternoon for a little girl who was turning three. Getting into the car, Gabi's car seat was too hot for her to sit in right away, and when we turned on the air conditioning, we had to sit and endure the hot air blasting out of the vents until things cooled down. By then the back of my shirt was already damp and my makeup streaming down my face. How do women manage to look good in this hot sweaty weather?

The birthday house was hard to miss. We turned a corner, and there, above the tree tops, hovered a giant blown-up Dora. As we got closer, we could see that she was attached to a jumpy house. I thought it looked a bit frightening, but Gabi was thrilled. And even though Gabi isn't aware yet of our household Dora ban (we will deal with the hysterics when the time comes, and not a minute sooner, because we’re secretly hoping she won’t notice), Dora the giant balloon doll decided this was a great day for revenge.

While I was sitting out back in the shade holding a cold water bottle to my face, Gilberto was watching Gabi and the birthday girl in the jumpy house out front. All of a sudden, the jumpy house wilted down to the ground with both girls inside. My husband dived in through the little opening and made a tent with his arms so they weren't enveloped and suffocated by the tarp-like walls. He then put his legs out of the little door, creating an escape route. As soon as Gilberto started yelling GO GO GO, Gabi shot through his legs to safety outside. The other little girl, though, was terrified, and Gilberto had to pick her up and dive back out with her in his arms. My husband, the diving hero!

Because of all the screaming (which I was oblivious to, being so wrapped up in staying cool), parents rushed outside to see what was going on. Once calm had been restored, the other parents tried to explain what had happened by telling the truth (a breaker had blown), which resulted in two still frightened and now confused little girls. Gilberto jumped in and told them that Dora had gone night night, silly Dora, and they needed to wake her back up again. The girls thought this was great, and were soon laughing at how silly Dora was, though Gabi stayed away for the rest of the day, preferring to pick leaves off a nearby hedge and gather all the snails she found into little family circles.

Dora may have scared Gabi away from jumpy houses for a few months (they are too much fun for her to say no forever), but she didn't loosen MY resolve. I do think we should avoid Dora themed parties for while, though, lest she has something else sneaky up her sleeve.

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