Of Children and Pools

As perhaps best said by the Scot poet Robert Burns, ‘the best plans of mice and men often go awry’. Well, he didn’t say that exactly. That’s a translation. What he actually did write was ‘The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men / Gang aft agley.’ But I didn’t figure too many Puddintopia readers would be keen on trying to figure out what the hell Gang aft agley means, so I helped you out a little.

Anyway, the Puddinette and I had a fine plan for today; at least, it looked good on paper at 8:30 this morning. The Tree Guy was scheduled to arrived at 9 AM to clear away some nasty brush that’s been consuming part of the backyard since we moved in. Its evil tendrils were starting to venture out into the neighbors’ spaces, so we decided it was finally time to rid our lot of that sinister presence. When Guy was done, we figured we’d head out for a family trip to the pool, to combat the fact that the weather folk were calling for temperatures roughly equivalent to that of the sun outside today.

As tends to happen, The Tree Guy didn’t make it to the house until 10. He did an absolutely bang-up job on the cleanup, though, for a very reasonable price, and slight tardiness aside, I would definitely recommend him. At least, to anyone willing to cope with a little eccentricity, that is. I find that’s often part of the deal; some of the best people who’ve ever done work for me were nutty as a fruitcake. Unfortunately, you get plenty of people, too, that are just plain nutty, without any helpful skills. I recommend avoiding those people.

So the tree guy finished shortly after lunch, which is a remarkably brief amount of time on task, if you ask me. Had I attempted it myself, I’d still be out there, just now trying to decide if I only needed one more day to finish the job or if two was more reasonable. Oh, and I don’t have a chainsaw either, so I’d be foolishly hacking away with a grubbin’ hoe and a pocket knife. Did I mention it was roughly the temperature of the sun outside today? Hello, heat stroke!

Anyway, when the task was finished, I ordered our heathen children to put on swimsuits and mount up. Being children, they did so with a multitude of enthusiasm, but slightly less self control. Once the chaos subsided and the dust cleared, we headed out for an afternoon of poolside frolicking, with the sun shining and the birds chirping.

Of course, when we arrived at the pool, dark, no…angry, better yet… Wizard of Oz, Armageddon-style clouds had taken up residence directly over pool. It was storm time, and we’re talking lightning flashes, claps of thunder, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria!

Following the lead of itsy-bitsy spiders everywhere, we waited out the storm, hoping that the sun might peek out and reopen the pool soon. Half an hour later, though, when it started to rain again, we called it and headed home.

In the Looking on the Bright Side column, today my children learned the value of shaking their little fists at the sky. However, shortly thereafter we got a free Nachos Bellgrande, which apparently made it the Best Day Ever (according to my second son). I guess disappointment is a relative thing.


One thought on “Of Children and Pools

  1. My back yard neighbor took down the fence in the heat and cut his share of the brush. Ugh, now I’m required to do something about mine. I’m sure I can muster the wrong tools for the job.

    I suspect my wife will soon be asking the puddinette about carpet. She swears carpet is in our future. Frankly, I’m not concerned. Sooner or later…. Kitchen discussions also now abound so you may need to recommend a nut with skills for that. Please keep your asylum list handy.


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