In celebration of my oldest son’s birthday, we went to Ocean Breeze Water Park for a fun day of water slides and stairs. Up the stairs, down the slide. Up the stairs, down the slide. My nine year old was tied to my hip. Do you know just how many times a nine year old can fly up a hill of stairs? Proudly, I matched her every step.
My middle son was true to form, messing with anyone’s mind he could mess with. Today he went to the Dip ‘N Dots counter and said, “Can I have some nachos, please?” “We don’t have any nachos. We just sell icecream.” “Oh! OK then give me the chips.” “But we just have ice cream….” My son put his head on the counter and feigned a weepy cry. Then he walked away.
Later I looked across the park to see him practically cornering the ape mascot. He had passed the ape an inner tube and was motioning for him to go on a slide with him. The ape shook his head “no” and shrugged. My son then pointed to the picture of this same ape going down a water slide. Again, the ape shrugged. The poor person inside that suit. You just can’t win with my middle kid. I find great joy in his absolute uniqueness.
Now for my big story. I did it. I DID IT! On a whim I said to my son, “Take me on the speed slide!” “OK LET’S GO!” Up I climbed to the two very high speed slides. Instructions soon came. “Put your hands behind your head. Keep on your back and cross your legs.” Oh jeez. I was about to go down a water slide that required safety instructions.
Before I could back out I threw myself at the tube, watched my son let go on the other side and then I let her rip. My daughter said I screamed. Maybe I blacked out during that part. All I remember is the feeling of fear, free falling and then more fear that somehow I would not stop.
But I stopped. I got up, looked back up the slide and grinned. Grinned BIG. After all, I was the only female over 24 that went down that slide today. And I was CERTAINLY the only 44 year old mother of three that went down the slide in at least the last week. I DID IT I DID IT I DID IT! I even have marks on my back to prove it. They obviously didn’t worry about smoothness when they attached the pieces together.
I found a video on Youtube of the slide:
So what does this have to do with something biting me? At the water park? You won’t guess it in a million years. We walked to the car still in our bathing suits. Got in. Put it in drive. Scratch. Hmmm. Scratch scratch. Uhhhh…. Then my son scratches. Scratch. Mom? But I was too busy to answer. I had something biting me like crazy somewhere somewhat private.
OK, OK. It was my bikini line. Both legs. And I started to form red bumps and welts. As did my son. Not on HIS bikini line. On his ankles. By then I was ready to cut my legs off. The burn. The sting. The unbelievably long drive home. I raced into the shower and literally dragged a razor across the fiery skin. After all, maybe I COULD cut off my legs.
Who else would park their car in a patch of chiggers but ME.
And who else would step in them and carry them in to the car but ME.
Fortunately my son was spared the worse. But me? I quickly began to search the internet for C-H-I-G-G-E-R-S. The overwhelming home cure? Listerine. But I didn’t have Listerine. I had Scope. So I poured Scope all over my bikini line. A small bit strayed. We will not be talking about that. But we CAN talk about how my bikini line became immediately fresh and minty.
Scope, Benadryl Spray, Cortisone Cream and Calamine Lotion later, I am not digging in to my skin with a knife. And about 15 minutes ago I took a Benadryl and swallowed it with… well, a bit of Cosmo.
Tonight I will dream. I will dream of my son dancing with an ape around a dish of nachos. I will dream about climbing endless stairs. I will dream about flying down the speed slide into a pool of chiggers. And I will smile. Because no other 44 year old woman slid down that slide today. Especially in to a pool of chiggers.