The Mayor of Riverwoods

Sunday night we attended Grandpa Bill’s retirement party.

DSC_0805He was retiring from one of his two jobs, the mayor of Riverwoods. It is a suburb about 30 miles north of Chicago. Riverwoods is a unique community. Each lot sold must be at least 1 acre. It keeps the privacy levels up. For many years Grandpa Bill and Bubbie lived in a prairie style Humrich house that backed onto a forest preserve. It was normal to pull into their driveway and see deer standing outside.

Bill is a rare politician in that he is completely unpretentious. In fact, the entire time I’ve known him, I’ve never heard him mention to anyone that he is a Mayor, a position he’s held for 14 years.

He also had a strong sense of principle for this position. Once, without realizing it was a village car, we asked to borrow his SUV to move some bigger furniture. He politely but firmly said no, the car was property of Riverwoods and it would not be right to loan it out. I gained a lot of respect for him that day.

I noticed immediately when we arrived that, besides one other couple, we were the only ones there with kids. The other’s couple’s kid was around eleven. When you surround yourself constantly with families with small children, you forget that this messy, chaotic time in your life is short. The majority of your life is lived in the adult world where there are standards and rules of conduct.

We were greeted with a mix of delight, awe, shock and disgust. Bubbie had already told everyone about Ben’s fall out the window. Which made me a bit insecure. I’m sure everyone was thinking I was a bad mother and curious to watch us with our kids. Well, we did not disappoint.

Sam banged on the table and practiced screaming during Bill’s speech. Ben colored all over the table cloth. And later, when Adam was taking Aaron for a walk to calm him down and I was covering the other three kids, I thought it would be a good idea to change Sam into his jammies at the table. I got quite a few looks for having a naked baby, but nothing was worse then when I pulled off the diaper and realized all too late that it was filled with poo. I may be pretty far gone when it comes to what is acceptable in public, but I know changing poo diapers at the dinner table is a definite no-no.

Bubbie and Bill sold their beautiful Humrich and are moving to Arizona next month.

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