This is seriously becoming the stuff of sitcoms.
The Wal-Mart trip was surprisingly uneventful. Taking a page from Sunny, I made my list before we left so I knew exactly what I needed. Granted, it wasn’t a very long list, but this seemed like the responsible thing to do. We zipped in and out in about 20 minutes. Our twin stroller doubled as my shopping cart. I started thinking, “This is a piece of cake.”
That’s where the trouble started. I got cocky. We got home and I was feeling so good about things, I decided to take the kids down to the neighborhood playground. The dog got all excited when he heard the word “outside”, so I put his leash on him and he came, too.
We get to the playground and things are great. I let the kids run around a little and I hook the dog’s leash to the kids’ wagon. Joshua takes his ball to the basketball pad to shoot some hoops. Abby Kate plays ball for a few minutes, but she gets bored quickly and decides she wants to swing. I leave Joshua on the basketball pad to take Abby Kate to the swingset. I can push Abby Kate in the swing and still keep an eye on Joshua at the basketball pad some 50 feet away. Everybody’s happy. The weather’s great. Birds are chirping. All is bliss.
…a blurry streak of fur gallops past me, heading straight for the playground trash can.
The dog has chewed through his leash.
I kinda stand there for a minute, not sure what to do. Andy starts rummaging through the trash for anything edible, beginning with a discarded Starbucks cup. I instinctively start to call out the dog’s name, but then I stop. I know he’ll never come back anyway; calling for him will only let everyone else know he belongs to me. But I can’t leave the kids to go get him and I can’t just let him run wild through the playground. I hastily grab Abby Kate and pull her from the swing. Immediately she starts pitching a fit. I run to get Joshua, truncating his ball game. He too begins to convulse and rail. Based on the screams, onlookers must be thinking I’m subjecting my children to some kind of Chinese torture or something. Thankfully, Andy’s trash excursion doesn’t yield much more than the Starbucks so he rejoins us in time to make the journey home, marking his territory in every yard between the playground and our house.
I’ve decided to never leave the house again.