So what do you do when your biggest case and the main focus of your 12-month career as a litigator just disappears in a puff of smoke? Apparently, you take the day off and go to the zoo!
Yesterday morning I popped into one of my favorite partner's offices. He does a lot of securities litigation work, which I love, and I figured I should start finding some cases to add to my personal docket. Our conversation went something like this:
Me: So... you have any work for me?
Partner: Get out.
Partner: Didn't [big case] settle last night?
Partner: And how many hours did you bill in January?
Partner: Go home. Go home and don't come back for two days.
So I did, pausing only to call my grandparents to see if Landon and I could visit them in San Antonio the next day. I sprang Landon early from daycare (something that initially caused him great displeasure as I'd interrupted some sort of cooking experiment and he was patiently waiting his turn to stir the batter; I sat down and watched the magic unfold), and stopped at HEB to pick up something for dinner. When JP got home from his seminar at 6:45 I was cooking burgers while the french fries, personally cut by me, were crisping in the oven. And oh man, were those burgers were tasty- with sharp cheddar cheese and fresh slices of avocado, tomato, and romaine lettuce, all stacked on lightly toasted ciabatta buns. Yum. Working a half day can be delicious.
Then at 10 a.m. this morning Landon and I headed South on I-35 toward San Antonio. I sang along to the radio while Landon read "Dear Zoo" over and over again. We enjoyed a lovely lunch with my grandparents at their retirement community. Landon was on his best behavior and was fawned over by every resident we passed. He also got a tour around the front pond with my Grandpa.
On the drive over Landon had randomly remembered that my grandparents' community had a pond. He asked if there were ducks and then after about 3 minutes of silently staring out the window, he said, "I no bite the ducks." I told him that was probably a good idea and then after another few minutes of silence Landon said, "it makes them sad." Too true.
After lunch we became members of the San Antonio zoo. Landon was so excited to see all the animals in his favorite book spring to life.
(That is a "Dear Zoo" reference to those not up on their toddler literature.)
Next up was a staring contest with a rhinoceros.
and then some bonding with a brown bear.
Landon blew him lots of kisses as we walked away.
And just like last time, the "Mangoes" caused the greatest excitement and we stopped by their little habitat at least five times.
It was a wonderful day -- gorgeous weather, a quiet blackberry, and a special trip my little man. If there's anything I've learned so far as a lawyer (and as working mom generally), it's that you have to seize your down time when you can get it. I'm so glad for today.