“Hello. I’m calling to report a student absence.”
“John Smith*.” (*not actual name)
“Reason for absence? Is your student ill?”
“Uh . . . . uh . . . . uh . . . ”
“It’s all right if he’s not ill. I’ll just write parent permission.”
Thus, I was saved from lying before 8:00 in the morning. Today, our older boys had a school-at-home end-of-the-year picnic and the local waterpark had a homeschool day (tickets only $11 compared to the normal $35 price) and so we pulled our younger son out of school, took the day off work and frolicked all day.
However, so did about a kajillion other families, so the waterpark was really crowded. And the pool meant for the younger set was as cold as the ocean water off the coast of Washington, no exaggeration. My 4-year old did cavort in the chilly water and slide down the crowded slide and even dip her face into the water–just because she can–but she had more fun riding rides (an ancient carousel and an assortment of old carnival rides). We slid down one of those giant slides on black carpet–she on my lap–but at the tippy-top, she decided that she didn’t want to do it, but I said, “Oh, too late, we’re sliding,” and we did and when we reached the bottom, she immediately turned to me for a hug with a crumpled chin and an accusatory look. “That scared me!” she said.
We set our 14-year old twin boys free with instructions to meet us at 3:30 p.m. and they eventually found some friends they knew from homeschool P.E. class. I still have no idea if they went on a single waterslide or if they merely savored their freedom by wandering around, bumping into people.
My husband spent the afternoon with our 9-year old, standing in long lines to ride 3-minute waterslides. They also rode a rollercoaster twice. Oh, and my 9-year old went into the wave pool . . . my husband reported that he immediately lost sight of him in the chaos of the crowded waves. My son swam to the very far end of the wave-pool where the waves are of Perfect Storm dimension and, as he reports, “I almost drowned.” He realized he couldn’t tread the rough water for long and wisely swam to safety. My husband relayed this story to me with some shame, as he is the reigning Mr. Safety.
And, as if all that adventure weren’t enough, I spent an hour and a half at our own pool when we returned to town so my daughter could swim even longer. She is practicing underwater somersaults, but she calls them “underdogs.” That child has enough energy to power a small city.
The original point of this dissertation was to explain my dismay this morning when I realized that a domestic bomb of some sort had exploded, leaving mounds of laundry and stacks of dirty dishes everywhere. I was puzzled until I remember yesterday:
School, followed by work on VBS (Vacation Bible School), followed by a lengthy visit with a friend (whom I’ve been begging to come over . . . she came to pick up some VBS materials, but also to chat which was awesome). She left and I took the kids to the pool . . . came home in time for dinner (thank God for Crock-Pots) . . . then my mother stopped by, then I left for a meeting (VBS!) at church at 8:00 p.m., returning home by 10:00 p.m. I don’t think I washed a single load of laundry yesterday and so today, the molehills have turned into mountains.
But, happy day, Paris Hilton went back to jail and I can’t help but feel opposing emotions: pity for her because she is so clearly distraught, but pleasure because justice is served. If only Paris had been forced to have temper tantrums when she was three and didn’t get her way, she might not be having temper tantrums at age 26 when she doesn’t get her way. I hope that she is in jail thinking about how she messed up and not wondering why this bad thing is happening to her. I suspect she feels like a victim and not like a criminal, though.
You might find it odd that I have an opinion about Paris Hilton, but, of course, I have an opinion about everything. Or almost everything.