So as good meaning teachers are sometimes want to do, they sent home a school project that requested a significant investment of the parent's time to help their child complete. Basically this project was to create a presentation complete with a handmade artifact, about Christmas in a foreign country. All would have been good if my child had been assigned Chile or Zimbabwe or so country in which we have no earthly knowledge of Christmas practices but our child got the Philippines instead. Mama being Filipino, takes all things relating to her home country personally.
So we have spent several evenings hunting down things to include on the poster board presentation part and I spent several hours out in the garage making a parol which is a shooting star made out of bamboo and tissue paper. Being fresh out of bamboo, I cut thin strips of pine, glued them, steamed them so they could be bent into the proper shape and let everything dry. I thought that would be the extent of my involvement but I forgot about the one line in the directions stating that all pictures on the poster board must be in color.
I gave up on color printers a couple years ago since I rarely used the color, it was very expensive to replace the cartridges which is why I always had it turned on black and white mode and still it went through the colors cartridges like candy. Instead I bought a nice black and white laser printer which prints fast, neatly and the cartridges last forever. So our options seemed to be to go to the local library and pay money to use their color printer, go to the school during school hours and use theirs, or just to print the pictures at the local same day print shop at the drugstore. We chose the latter option.
Trip one: We pull into a packed parking lot early one evening and make an attempt but the photo department has four or five people standing in line and people using the photo kiosks. We decide to go grab a bit to eat and come back later.
Trip two: A couple hours later we return to the store but the pictures my wife saved onto a thumb drive from the internet are too low of resolution to even print. So it is back home again.
Trip three: Not wanting to wait through long lines, I show up the next morning five minutes before opening and am first in line at the door. When it opens I make a beeline to the kiosk and in five minutes, the five pictures have been ordered. It tells me they will be ready in fifteen minutes. So I do a little bit of stocking stuffer shopping and come back to the counter twenty minutes later. The lady asks if she can help me and I tell her I'm just waiting for my pictures. "Oh honey," she says, "I have 800 pictures to do before yours. It will be several hours still."
As I found out, you can evidently submit orders online overnight for next morning pickup and they take precedent over those submitted in the store and no, they can slip my five pictures in between anywhere. Well hells bells. So I had to drive all the way back across town only to make a fourth trip sometime later today to pick up the pictures. I've probably spent four or five dollars on gas now just to print off five pictures for $1.37. It is no wonder I find myself becoming a hermit and avoiding all this insanity until after the first of the year when everyone returns back to their normal lives.