|Wow! This is...slushy. And brown. Can I eat it?|
About a month ago, we went to Snowfest. What might that be? This part of the world is not a place where it normally snows. The city of Universal City, therefore, trucks in a bunch of shaved ice in February and has a little festival with food and rides and such. Fun stuff. Various organizations set up booths to sell food as a fundraiser. Larry had to bring some uniforms to one of his soccer coaches(he's the commissioner, and that is one of his responsibilities), so we loaded up Zane and took off for the park. (I've lived here for twenty years, and never knew that there was an actual park in Universal City, because I'm clueless, but that is another story.)
Larry went off to do his soccer thing, leaving me to take care of our son. Zane and I walked around, checking out all the rides. Zane was interested in a bungee jumping sort of activity; he thought it was "spider" related. I told him that we would have to wait in line; was he sure that that is what he wanted to do? Yes, he assured me. That is what he wanted to do. So we wandered about until we found the booth selling wristbands to ride the rides, and got Zane set up. Then we hiked to the bungee ride and found the line.
Let me say right here that I hate crowds, and I hate lines. I particularly hate crowded lines. I don't like to go to carnivals or festivals for this very reason. This wasn't a long line, but it was a crowded line. Entire families were in the line with their little dears, and even as we arrived at the end of what should have been a ten minute wait, several 'cousins' arrived to join the family ahead of us.
It was windy and cold. It had rained earlier in the day, and the ground was muddy. We were lined up next to a dumpster. Nothing for a four year old to see except a small green wall. Zane decided after a minute or two that he wanted me to hold him. Twenty minutes go by with me holding my son. My forty pound son. My hip and lower back started organizing a pain strike. I finally tell Zane that he can stand on his own. He flops onto the ground in protest. I pick him up and finally get him to stand.
By this time, my back hurt from standing, from holding Zane, and just on general principle. I was becoming more and more irritated about the "families" in front of us, especially once I realized that half of the 'relations' didn't even look remotely alike. Nobody likes people who cut in line, least of all the people who are behind the evildoers.
We have not moved from our spot next to the dumpster in all this time. It's been thirty minutes, however, and I am committed. My boy was going to bungee jump, and that is that.
"I don't want to stand in line, Mama." Zane tells me after forty minutes.
"You are standing in line, son," I tell him. "We are waiting in this line so you can bungee jump."
"I don't want to bungee jump."
I did not raise my voice. I did not curse. I did get down to my son's eye level, and I looked him right in the eyes.
"Zane, we are going to stand here in this line. We are going to stand here until it is our turn. You are going to bungee jump. You are going to bungee jump and you are going to like it. Is that clear?"
It might have been seeing his mother speak with clenched teeth. Whatever the reason, the boy stood in line for the next fifteen minutes without a word. And he bungee jumped, and he liked it.