Charlie

I came across a story I wrote in the fall of 2005 about an adventure trip I took with my 3-year-old grandson. This was simply a journal entry, no intention on publishing, just remembering:

Yesterday, on a whim, I picked up Charlie and took him with me on a picture-taking spree. Becky wants some pics of autumn colors and Morrison County peaked two days ago. As we drove around I wanted to stop every 1/2 mile. The trees were glorious. I stopped twice on private property and both times got caught by owners leaving. Felt a little foolish. Charlie loved it but was disappointed that the parks I’d taken him to did not have swings. At one point we both had to go to the bathroom and I was jealous when he could simply take out his little boy pee-pee and pee into a flower patch. I had to whisk him into the car, speed over to Heidi’s and do my female peeing into her toilet. Then we set out again.

This time I decided to take him to a real park. We stopped at a gas station to get a hot-dog lunch and slushes. The attendant showed a picture in a magazine that really made her laugh of a little boy in a crowd holding himself. I said, “That is funny. My grandson and I had a scene just like that 20 minutes ago.” I showed the picture to Charlie to see if he would notice the little boy’s self-holding. He didn’t. He just looked at it blankly like he wondered why two adults would want to look at a picture of a little boy that wasn’t him. Then I said, “Charlie got to go in the woods. I had to hold it and wait to go when I could get to a real bathroom. It just isn’t fair.” There was a man fixing himself some coffee near where we talked. He smiled, proud I am sure, to be among the privileged.

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