Sunday, April 02, 2017

The Wheels on the Bus

Our kids’ school always struggles to get parents to help out with activities. But not on zoo day. For parents, the field trip to Hogle Zoo is pretty much the sweetest volunteer assignment there is – the school bus takes care of the transportation and the animals take care of the entertainment. Plus you get to spend a day outside in the sun with your kid.

And I was lucky enough to land the gig.

But it turns out, it’s a tougher task than I thought. Each parent was given a group of kindergartners to keep an eye on. For me that meant Tate, a boy I’ll call Horatio, and girls who we’ll call Miffy and Biffy. Here’s a quick look at our day together.

Before we got on the bus

Miffy: Biffy, do you want some sparkle chapstick? Here, have mine. 

Biffy: Yay! I love sparkle chapstick!

Miffy: I want it back. [Grab!] My mom says I can’t give away my chapstick.

Biffy: [Wailing] Miffy took my chapstick awaaaaaaay!

On the bus

Miffy: I’ve never been on the bus before.

Me: Pretty cool, huh?

Miffy: No. I’m skeeeered. [Waaaaaaaail.]

Me: You’re not scared. Stop fake-crying.

Biffy: [Bawling] Miffy keeps touching meeeeeee.

Me: Miffy, stop touching Biffy.

Biffy: [Bawling] Miffy’s not touching me.

Five minutes after arriving at the zoo

Miffy: I’m hungry.

Horatio: Me, too.

Biffy: [Bawling] I’m sooooo hungry.

Me: Lucky for you, I’ve got some snacks for you guys.

Five seconds after having our snack

Miffy: [Sees another group from her class eating granola bars] I’m soooo hungry. Can I have a granola bar?

Me: No. You’re not really hungry. You just had a snack.

Five minutes later

Miffy: [Sees another group from her class eating ice cream] Uhhhh. I’m sooooooo hot. It’s so hot out here.

Me: No it’s not. It’s 65 degrees.

Miffy: If only there was something that could cool me down.

Me: I’m not buying you ice cream.

Miffy: But I’m sooooo hot.

Just about every minute after

Me: Horatio, hurry up. Tate, over here. Ladies, come on. Come back. Over here. Let’s go.

Biffy: [Bawling] Miffy’s being mean to meeeeeee.

Miffy: [Bawling] Biffy’s bugging meeeee.

Tate: I’m boooooored.

10 minutes before we have to get back on the bus

Me: Girls, come back. Don’t run.

Biffy: [Trips and goes tumbling down] Whaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhh!

Me: Are you okay?

Biffy: No! I need a band-aid here. And here. And here and here. [Sob, sob, sob]
Could this day GET ANY WORSE?!

Me: I hear ya, Biffy. I hear ya.

The whole field trip only lasted about three hours but somehow it felt much, much longer. I tip my hat to all of the teachers who deal with 30 of these little rug rats all day, every day.

Nevertheless, it was nice to spend a few extra hours with my favorite redheaded monster.

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