To preserve what precious little sanity I have, while Husband was out of town last week I enrolled Sweet Pea and Pumpkin Pie in Sports Camp at a nearby park for a few hours in the afternoon. (Pickles opted out b/c he was already pretty busy with swim team).
First a note about the park: The park where the camp took place is a few minutes from Cloud 8, and the kids play on a
desert field with NO shade at all and is a looooong hot walk across a looooong dirty gravel parking lot from the water fountains/ bathroom pavilion. Make sure to BYO iv bags water bottle, kids.
Now a note about the camp: This fun sports camp is run by an organization that employs international college-aged young people. They are friendly and competent and have delightful accents that amuse me.
This was an especially hot week in NJ, so the counselors decided that Friday would be a good day to have squirt gun day at camp. Keep in mind that these counselors are Brits. They had no idea what squirt gun culture in this country is like. They had no idea that a Super Soaker Water Cannon even existed, nor did they likely see a reason why such a device would need to exist (I am inclined to agree). So when Friday arrived and my sweet, 3 foot 8 inch Pumpkin Pie (the youngest kid at that camp this year) showed up with something that could easily be called the Water Slaughter 30o0, their reaction of confusion sprinkled with mild horror was predictable. In another setting it could have been an international incident. Sweet Pea is no firearm slouch, but he decided to give up some firepower in exchange for mobility. He brought his Bottle Blitz that can hold a standard water bottle, liter bottle, or 2 liter soda bottle. He likes to carry his refills around in a backpack so he doesn’t risk wasting time in line at the hose. These poor international kids with the amusing accents had no idea what they were getting into. They also had no plan about how to fill up these water guns.
Seeing an issue, I offered to take their several gallon jugs over to the pavilion in the van where Pickles and I would fill them up and bring them back for them to enjoy 15 minutes of squirt gun mania before the water ran out and they had to teach the kids how to play Cricket or something. Camp Counselor David Beckham (What? He’s a Brit!) asked if I would bring their big Gatoraide-style water cooler and fill it with water, too. Okay, sure thing. He then mentioned that the sinks are so small in the bathrooms that the jugs don’t fit under them and you’ll have to use the water fountains. Whuck? This was when I lost interest. But, as a team player who had the poor judgement to let Pumpkin Pie and Sweet Pea bring the largest water guns on the planet, I decided to do my part and drive back over the gravel parking lot, scoot the 3 minutes home, fill everything up with the hose, then scurry back so Pickles and I can get on with our errands.
Pickles and I did exactly that, we filled up the 5 gallon jugs, and the big orange Gatoraide cooler (I even filled that up at the sink and added ice in case they needed a drink!). We loaded the cooler into the trunk and I noticed that three of the gallon jugs did not have tops. Grrrrr. That was an accident waiting to happen in the Ninja Van that is still new to us, so I made Pickles hug two of them like newborns in the back seat, while I hung on to the third for dear life. Back through the neighborhood and across the
largest bumpiest, dirtiest gravel and dirt parking lot in the tri-state area parking lot to deliver the water. The un-capped jugs made it without incident, which pleased me. Pickles and I put them on the ground while the campers wandered over to gather up the jugs and generally rubberneck. I went to the trunk to get the cooler only to discover that the big orange 50 million gallon jug had overturned in my new to me 3 year-old van’s trunk and dumped 2/3 of its contents onto the trunk carpet. Awesome.
I believe I tried not to curse.
I pulled all the crap out of the trunk as fast as I could and blotted up as much as I could with the one towel we had. Pointless. By then the campers were starting to file over to us and I had an especially curious little boy looking over my shoulder. He looked about 7, but I could tell he was kind and wise beyond his years.
Me: (Grumbling to myself, huffing and puffing with irritation bordering on fury) I have no idea what kind of moron would put this cooler in the back and expect it NOT to tip over and spill all over the place!!!
Unknown 7 year-old camper: (In a very kind and knowing voice.) Oh… Your husband?