Saturday, July 9

Riding in Cars with Friends

Youngest son got a phone call yesterday afternoon from an old friend who had moved to Saskatchewan last year. Friend is here now, visiting relatives, with the brand new Mustang his dad bought him. "Let's go get something to eat," he suggested.

My youngest is only 15, but he's a December baby, so most of his friends are 16 and already have their driver's licenses, but none of them have much access to a car, so I haven't had to deal with him riding in cars with friends. Until yesterday.

I had no reason to say no to his request to go with his friend. They are both responsible boys, more responsible than almost any teenage boys I know. (Yes, I know that those of you who've had sixteen-year-old boys are thinking how little that statement says.) Besides, I have a bit of a soft spot for this particular friend. He's the one who said to my son, in all seriousness, "Why doesn't someone tell that girl that her underwear is showing?!" I love a boy who thinks like that.

So he went with his friend to get something to eat. I've done the kids riding in cars with friends thing many times before, and I quit worrying too much a couple of kids ago.

Youngest daughter is staying with a friend for a week while the friend's mother is away on holiday. She packed up her clothes and everything else she'd need and said she'd see us in a week.

She made it 16 hours or so without us, then she called and asked if I was taking the dog for a walk. "I'll go with you when you go," she said, "I need the exercise."

Yesterday was her second day away and she came home twice. The first trip was just to check out the inside of the fridge. I'm not sure why she was here the second time, but it was on that trip that she found out that her younger brother was off riding in a car with a friend. "Where'd they go?" she asked. "When will they be back? What kind of parent gives a sixteen year old boy a car?"

Shortly after she left, youngest son returned home. It wasn't long before youngest daughter called to see if he'd made it back yet. I could hear her disapproval. She said, "I don't like that he's riding in cars with friends."

I told youngest son this story. I thought it would be good for him to know that it wasn't only his mother who worried about him. "That's just stupid!" he said. "Someone with a new Mustang isn't going to drive fast. What if he wrecked it?"

There you go. Reason number one for buying your sixteen-year-old a hot new car.

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