Stories from the Land of the Oblivious

“Daddy, my camp counselor asked if anyone had nuts in their lunch today,” Baxter brought up at dinner time. “I wonder if we’re supposed to bring nut-free lunches like at Lyle’s school.”

“….and…?” Matt looked at him.  “Did you tell her you had a peanut butter sandwich?”

“No, not really,” he replied.


“Wow, Lyle, I heard from Carmen that your school bus only came back from the Nature Center field trip at pick-up time!  That must’ve been a long field trip!”

“Was it uncomfortable in the heat, or were you okay?”

“Who did you sit with on the bus?”

“Did you take a long hike this time?”

His responses to my questions were agreeable in general, but in retrospect brief and non-committal.

I heard later in the evening that his camp’s school bus had, in actuality, overheated, gone up in smoke and had to be evacuated, and the kids had sat out on the lawn of a retirement center on Pulaski listening to stories for the majority of the camp day.  The actual field trip?  A quick 45-minute walk around the shortest trail.

The child didn’t think to mention any of this to me or the babysitter.


We arrive at camp on the second day.  Baxter looks at his peers as they walk past him.  They have green, blue, purple hair, sticking up in otherworldly directions.  Some are in funny hats, others are in wigs.

“It must be crazy hair day or something,” he muses.  I agree.

The camp director looks at him, eyebrows raised.

“Baxter, you didn’t hear about that yesterday?” I ask, suddenly suspicious.

“No, I guess not,” he says.

The director mentions good-naturedly that they reminded his group about it countless times the day before.  She was kind enough to say that he, like her, could just act crazy since they hadn’t dressed up.

Some days I’m pretty sure we ain’t acting crazy at all.


11 responses to “Stories from the Land of the Oblivious

  1. Sadly, my dear, I think it’s a gender thing. Seriously. My husband can be participating in a conversation with me and then ask me something not thrirty minutes later. Something which was the entire point of the conversation. Yeah, it starts early. Good luck!

  2. I love the bus story. We are so there.

  3. Sounds like business as usual around here. My son informed me Monday night that the school psychologist (horrors!!!) wanted to talk to me. Well, yeah, that was Monday and despite the man having my email and phone #, not a peep. I have a funny feeling he wanted to talk to me, like, oh, maybe 3 months ago and it only occurred to G to tell me now.

    But then, that’s pretty much par for the course.

  4. Too funny! Sadly, things are the complete opposite here. I would have heard the whole bus story and would still be hearing it 6 months, maybe 6 years, from now.

  5. I have a friend with two sons (both grown now) who said she always made sure to get to know the mothers of the girls in her sons’ classes so she would be sure to know what was going on.

    Having a boy and a girl myself, I can vouch for the difference in what gets reported at the end of the day. I must employ extrapolation and inference with Carl and “cut to the chase!” with Claire.

  6. Well, it’s good to know that my son isn’t the only one who doesn’t tell me anything about his day. I usually get a “I don’t remember” response.

  7. “Some days I’m pretty sure we ain’t acting crazy at all.”

    Hilarious. And too true. Perfect. 🙂

  8. This post is perfect. I am dying laughing over here.

  9. Haha! Isn’t it fun to imagine what it would be like if children ran the world? Well, maybe not fun, exactly…

  10. I’m in beautiful Chi-town, too, and my three kids go to day camp too. God bless the park district.

    Instead of asking “what did you do today” and getting half-a$$ed responses, now I ask “what was your favorite part of the day” and “what was the worst.” Try it; it works. (Almost too good – they won’t stop talking 🙂

  11. Thanks, One Mom! The best part is, I do ask about their day like that and they’ll answer lots of specific questions…they just kind of forget to tell me other major things! 🙂

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