June 01, 2010

Memorial Day Recap

Ah, Memorial Day, a.k.a. "The Starter Pistol of Summer." I never seem to take adequate note of my Memorial Day activities, owing primarily to the fact I used to use Memorial Day to sleep until noon, and everything that followed was just more self-indulgent crapulence.

But now, I'm a Dad, so Memorial Day was a chance to see the world anew once more, through the babbling wonderment of an eight month old. It's easy to capture these kinds of days exclusively through the camera lens or the Flip video camera, but those only go so far. So, to the written word I turn.

Aiden began his day, as he usually does, at 7 a.m. It's uncanny, really, how punctual he is about waking at that hour. It's also uncanny how I've become programmed to wake up in anticipation of his waking up. Alarm clocks are for people without children, I've come to believe.

After his obligatory post-wake-up bottle of formula, he was ready to play, so we went into the porch, where he rolled and babbled and tried a few abortive attempts at crawling; all the mechanics are in place, but he can't seem to get them all to work together as a cohesive crawling whole. So, he tends to roll his way to whatever he wants, although he has performed some rough army crawling when an object particulary grabs his attention.

Then it was a quick jaunt downstairs to my office to fire up a Skype session, so my Dad could watch his grandson grab assorted objects off my desk and place them in his mouth. Skype is one of those technological innovations that I always knew was on the horizon, but I never figured it would be A) so damned cool and B) FREE. I don't imagine it will always be free, since fee-creep always tends to spoil this things eventually, but for now it's the chance to live like Star Trek, entirely free of charge. Amazing.

By that time, my wife had woken up and gotten ready for the day, and we decided Memorial Day would be the day we took Aiden to the house of his non-Skype Grandpa to use his swimming pool. I knew there would be some logistical things to take care of prior to actually putting Aiden in the pool, but I certainly didn't anticipate I'd find myself at Toys-R-Us loading up on swimming pool necessities, such as a baby-floatation device, a diaper-protecting swimming suit, assorted water toys and sunscreen. All told, the bill came to $91, which struck me as rather expensive for an outing that probably wouldn't be much longer than an hour.

To say Aiden enjoyed the swimming pool would be a supreme understatement. I didn't know what he'd think of the whole experience, because the water wasn't what you'd call. . . what's the word. . . WARM. While it wasn't cryogenically cold, it certainly could cause shrinkage. Regardless, Aiden couldn't wait to get in that pool. There was a brief lower-jaw quiver acknowledging the temperature drop, but other than that, it was pure, undiluted joy. He was practically crowing with delight. I could have bottled his excitement, since it was almost radiating off him in waves. It was one of those moments that make up for the last 200 changed diapers.

Then it was home for his afternoon nap as we waited for the time to pass before the Memorial Day dinner hosted at my mother-in-law's house. Once there, I broke out one of the water toys I'd purchased earlier in the day. While it's currently being marketed as a Toy Story 3 "Buzz Lightyear" rocket, old school water toy people like myself recognize it as a current iteration of the clown head and pointy clown hat toy from our youth. It was that magical toy that used a focused stream of hose water to levitate the clown hat above the clown head. Now it's a Buzz Lightyear rocket and launch pad. Whatever. It's still AWESOME.

While Aiden was far too young to do anything with the Buzz Lightyear water toy, his three-year-old cousin, Rosemary, immediately amused herself by running through the water stream. Although she started out wearing a swimming outfit, within about 30 seconds, she had stripped herself down to her birthday suit and was revelling in her nudity. It's odd how you just accept nudity from children. We all just kind of rolled our eyes in collective "Oh, it's just easier this way."

And so Memorial Day wrapped up with burgers, bratwurst, chips and beans, and Aiden slept like a rock, starting almost immediately once we got home. It was a great day, and I'm missing it already.

Posted by Ryan at June 1, 2010 10:49 PM | TrackBack
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