By all accounts, spending a holiday weekend camping with children can be joyful, relaxing, fun and carefree. That is not to say that the whole experience does not carry with it a certain amount of reprimands and reminders to get along, because it does. However, looking back on the 4 nights in the woods, I can honestly say that it was all worth it. Sticky marshmallow s'more fingers and all...
There I was, trying to finish my novel poolside as the kids splashed, screamed and enjoyed the water with a fresh layer of sunscreen smeared on their shoulders. This whole "kids in the pool" thing has changed drastically over the years as we've now reached the point where they do not require my presence in the actual pool with them at all times. Now I can enjoy my kidlets from the sidelines, even the little one - who knows the rules and comes to fetch her life jacket any time she wants to venture into the deeper end without a grown-up.
It is, in every way, bliss.
Gone are the days of bringing the Costco-sized package of Little Swimmers with us. Gone are the days of lugging ten pool toys a half a mile only to find that the one she really wanted, the blow-up alligator one with the seat in the middle, is back at the campsite. Gone are the days when I'd splash around with a giggling toddler, singing "motor boat, motor boat go so slow..." whilst blowing bubbles in the heavily chlorinated (for good reason, have you seen what those swim diapers can hold?) water. Gone.
Ah yes, as I was saying, bliss.
So yes, I was sunning, and supervising, and reading (a true multi-tasking feat!) when Katie came and flopped down on the lounger next to me.
"Mooooom, I have to go to the bathroom," she said, as if the entire act of muttering a single sentence was just so much work. Camping is tough.
Completely engrossed in my book and thinking about the significance of religious symbolism in connection with the Catholic church (I was reading Angels and Demons), I told her, "Well, go ahead in there and go."
Meaning the bathroom.
Not the pool.
But some things get lost in translation when you are camping and pool supervising and oh, reading while doing all of the above and what I meant as "go ahead into the bathroom and go" was heard by my daughter as "go ahead in the pool and go."
Details. Details. Details.
It might help if I were a bit more specific while doing my job (parenting). Lucky for the other pool revelers (including her brothers who would have been mortified had they known), Katie swears up and down that she did not actually go in the pool!
But still, there is a reason that pools contain a large amount of chlorine. And we all know what it is...
For whether or not my daughter contributed to the off balance pH of that particular pool, we will never know. But I'm not taking any chances.
Welcome, to summer.