"Hi... Kristy?" Of course it was Kristy. Who else would call me at noon to say "I just had a great idea!"? I had to laugh.
"You realize that it is eight minutes after twelve on a Saturday? And that I have four young, hungry children, running around my kitchen right now?" There was a pause. I hoped Kristy realized I was only giving her a hard time. I was about to tell her so, because I can't stand the thought that I've upset anyone, but she laughed and I could breathe easily again.
"They can wait, Spier."
"I refuse to call you Kelly. It makes me think of Saved By the Bell and Melrose Place and other stupid shows like that."
"Is there a Kelly on Melrose Place?" I asked. "I think you're thinking of 90210."
Kristy let out an exasperated sigh. "Mary Ann! Who cares?"
"You brought it up."
"Aren't you going to ask about my great idea?"
Grinning, I spread peanut butter on a slice of bread. Lunch was going to be a basic affair that day because we had planned to take the kids to a new Disney movie in the afternoon. I could picture Kristy, pacing around her kitchen, full of youthful energy. I used to have youthful energy. Now I have four youths to take care of.
"Sorry, Kristy. What's your great idea?"
"A reunion. Let's have a reunion."
"What? You mean the class reunion? It's two weeks away!" I cut the PB&J sandwich into quarters and got to work on the next one, peanut butter and fluff. I had already finished two peanut butter and bananas and a peanut butter and jam. We sure are a peanut butter loving family!
"Not the class reunion! I barely even want to go to that-"
"Oh, Kristy, you have to!" I interjected. "Everyone who's anyone is going to be there!"
"That's just the problem, Mary Ann. Anyone who's anyone, and I'm not anyone, and I wasn't much of anyone in high school. Or did you forget? Maybe you were too busy being cool to notice."
I fought the urge to roll my eyes. My sensitive side wanted to hug Kristy and make her feel better, but the side of me that spent the last fourteen years listening to Kristy complain about the social hierarchy of high school had long grown tired of it.
"Okay," I said, refusing to argue. "So... what's your idea? Skip the reunion and have our own? We can do that any time. Come over for dinner tonight. We'll be home around five. "
"Not a you-and-me reunion, Mary Ann! A BSC reunion! Invite all the girls, and Logan too! We'll do it on Friday since everyone, well, almost everyone, should be in the area anyway. You can tell Dawn and Stacey and Claudia and I'll get a hold of Mal, Abby, and Shannon, and Mal can call Jessi... Do you still have Logan's number? I haven't talked to him in years."
She sounded so excited. I tried not to discourage her. "That sounds... nice."
"Nice?" She sounded disappointed. "Don't you mean, fantastic?"
I cut the last sandwich into quarters and got five brightly colored plastic glasses and one sippy cup down from the cupboard. While we chatted I stirred up a large pitcher of chocolate milk. I thought about Dawn for a moment. The last time she visited, she called me June Cleaver, Stepford Wife, Laura Petrie, and other names like that. I pretended it didn't bother me at all, but the truth is... as much as I love my life, my husband and my children, sometimes I wonder what life would be like if I were something other than a homeschooling housewife. I met my husband when I was an eighteen year old freshman in college and he was a twenty-six year old med student. We took a sign language class together and the rest is history. A year later we were married and a year after that we had our first child, AlmaLyn Sharon, named for our mothers. Mine died when I was a baby. His died when he was in high school. Our daughter's middle name is for my stepmother, the only 'Mom' I've ever known.
"Kristy... I love you, and I want you to be happy, but I don't want you to get too excited about this, in case it doesn't happen. I mean, Jessi lives where now? Europe?"
"No!" she disputed. "She's back! Karen talks to Becca on facebook. She and Jessi got a place in Rhode Island together. They have a dance studio together. I've seen pictures online. They look great. And Providence isn't all that far away."
"Logan lives in Seattle. That I'm sure about. I don't think he's planning to come home for the reunion. He hasn't been back here since his family moved to Michigan." I didn't think Logan would want to come home early for a Babysitters Club reunion. What if the football team found out? I had to stifle a laugh. Ten years and we really haven't grown up all that much at all.
"Well, the rest of us could be here anyway. Claudia and Stacey are within driving distance, right? And I think Mallory moved back to Stoneybrook."
"She did," I confirmed. "Harrison's niece was in her class this year. Sixth grade."
"Random," said Kristy and I nodded in agreement, momentarily forgetting that she couldn't see me .
Just then, four little bodies came tearing into my sunny yellow kitchen like a hurricane. Hurricane Kelly!
"Mom! I'm hungry!" AlmaLyn shouted obnoxiously.
"I'm on the phone," I pointed out as I set the table. "Go tell your father that lunch is ready."
AlmaLyn bounced energetically out of the room, singing some Hannah Montana song. Meanwhile Harry, Sheridan and Eloise were literally running circles around me, chanting "Ring around the rosie, ring around the rosie!" at the top of their lungs.
"Listen, Kristy, I'm really sorry but I have to go. The kids are starved and we have to leave soon for the movies. But I'll call Dawn tonight and talk it over with her, okay? And I'll talk to you tomorrow. Why don't you come by after work and have lunch with us?"
She sighed again. I knew she was upset over my failure to act right now (she likes everything to happen RIGHT NOW) but sometimes there just isn't time for the Babysitters Club. We have real lives now.
We said our goodbyes and I hung up the phone. Then it was time for peanut butter sandwiches with my family.
Disclaimer: I don't own these characters, the town, etc. This should go without saying considering this is ffnet, but just to be on the safe side... I'm not Ann M Martin. :-)