Thursday, September 08, 2011

It’s Not an Adventure until Someone Falls into a Fountain

A story that I’ve been meaning to write up since it happened in May.

As is my tradition when SwingDaddy goes for a long bike ride, I took the boys on an adventure. We headed over to the University, where we peeked in on a taekwondo tournament briefly and then strolled around the campus, ending at the Claw, a fountain at the center of campus. I’ve always loved the campus fountains, and many undergraduates make a practice of “fountain hopping” on hot days.

Here’s a picture of Q-ster as a wee little dude next to the Claw. So intrepid in his sealife hat!

Back to present time, the fountain looked very pristine, newly resurfaced and cleaned, with clear water to admire. The boys first sat on the wide stone bench that surrounds it, but of course it was only moments later that they climbed up and started walking on it, which naturally progressed to running.

“Walking only!” I called.

They slowed up and continued walking around the fountain. Lots and lots of laps around the fountain, just barely keeping to a pace they could technically call walking. Finally, I told them they could make one last lap and started walking to the other side to guide them away. They grumbled.

Q-ster was the quickest to react. He yelled, “Buster fell in!” I ran over, put down my camera and bag, kicked off my shoes. It looked like the micro dude was going to stand up and walk back to us, but he swerved on all fours, moving towards the center of the Claw, so I waded in and hauled him out.

I popped back on the bench and patted his back. He spluttered a little. No panicking, no crying, not even a little uncertainty on his face. He stood there dripping, sturdy and ready for action again.

A kind stranger had also climbed in, and we thanked him for his attention.

I took off Buster’s wet shirt and mopped down his body. “Q-ster, give me your hoodie!” I wrapped the Buster in the jacket and gave my hoodie to Q-ster to wear. Rolled up my soaked pant legs, slipped my sneakers back on, and squished back to the car, where we dried off and got into dry clothes. This is where having spare pants for a potty training boy came in handy. I keep spare clothes in the car too, in case I’m wearing a dress and need sweatpants to change a car tire or something.

Miraculously, my iPhone survived. My pants were wet past the thigh pocket, but the water must have soaked up the leg instead of actually being immersed that far. My padded fabric phone case was wet, and I think it slowed down the water. I wrote the etsy crafter who made the case to tell her that her work had saved my phone.

After we got home, took hot showers and had lunch, I started getting us ready to go to the library when I realized that Buster only had one pair of shoes, and those were soaked. However, in a triumph of procrastination, I dug through the closet and found the old sneakers that I had intended to take to Goodwill when Q-ster outgrew them two years ago, and popped them on the micro dude’s feet.

The library also has a wide stone bench, this time surrounding a courtyard. Both boys immediately climbed up and started making laps.

“Walk, walk, walk!” I guess there weren’t residual issues from falling into the fountain. (Although later, I had to talk Buster through seeing picture of the fountain, in an attempt to make sure he was ok.)

As with most parents, I’m more relaxed the second time around. I didn’t even get the adrenaline of fear – it was just a matter of hauling the micro dude out of the water, which he probably would have done himself, if I’d given him a moment more. Of course, I also realize this would never have happened the first time around. Q-ster is more naturally cautious, and also I wouldn’t have let him walk on the stone bench at that age. Buster gets to try things a little earlier, because his big brother is already doing them.

An adventure indeed!


Bob said...

What a story, adventurous, excitement,
actions, danger, rescue, resolve, preparedness and happy ending.

Asianmommy said...

Wow--you are prepared. I'm impressed that you had an extra set of clothes for everyone. Great idea!

mayberry said...

I'm glad it all turned out fine for everyone, even the phone! Love the photo that captures Buster "walking" on the ledge ;)