When the babysitter complained that the people at Savannah’s church camp “are really into that whole God-thing,” and then scrunched her face in disgust, I had to fight to keep my sarcasm in check.
“Quelle horror!” I wanted to say.
The church camp is in the heart of Manhattan’s Financial District, right off Wall Street and a stone’s throw from the New York Stock Exchange, so I found it ironic this was her concern.
To me, the church, with its peace slogans, payers and songs, is a blessing. Like most Manhattan working parents, summer throws me into a tizzy, as I have to piecemeal both the funds and camps to get me through the 9-week school break. So, when our church announced that it was offering a camp I immediately pounced. In my opinion, it had everything a good New York City camp should: an air conditioning building, a cemetery where kids can play (no playground on Wall Street), and financial aid.
“I am a single mom and have medical expenses” I called to say soon after submitting my application, emphasizing my role as head of household.
“What do you have?” she asked. I thought she meant condition, so went into a lengthy explanation about Savannah’s health problem.
“No, I mean what can you pay?”
I had negotiated enough salaries to know you never want to offer the first number.
“What seems reasonable to you?” I asked, stalling for time.
“How about $5.00?”
I was hoping for a miracle, but this was unexpected. Grateful, but still shocked, all I could think to say was “Do you want that check or cash?”