Here is the scenario. We were tired and hot and irritated after lugging our seven kids and mountains of crap to and from the beach. We had watched the boys ravage the quiet dining room with folding chairs strapped to their backs. We had listened to a litany of complaints about such “beachy” things as “sand” and “water” and “sun.”
On a joyride through the neighborhood we rolled down the windows and turned up the music. We were singing and bopping and laughing when Chris floored the gas in his hideous pick up just as we were coming to a massive hurricane induced puddle. The monsoon like wave that erupted at that moment was impressive to say the least. We were already past the puddle when we saw the little boy standing next to his bike on the path next to the road. We all sucked in our breath as that wave of water flew out and then all collectively groaned as it came crashing down on his head and bicycle. The little boy was saturated from head to toe but worse, he looked downright dazed. I will never forget his little face in the side view mirror.
We arrived back at the house to find a nicely worded reprimand from the community’s own security force ( I don’t want to know what level of self-loathing it takes to be that guy). We had left our garage door open and were not actively unloading. It was an “eye sore.”
So, by Sunday afternoon we were ready for one last relaxing hour by the pool. I took it upon myself to order the beverages while Chris and our friends went over to the hot tub. Our morning at the beach with the children had been so emotionally draining that I practically grabbed the bartender by the neck when I said “I. Don’t. Care. that in ten minutes, these four drinks will cost $20 dollars less! I. Need. Them. Now.”
So overpriced drinks in hand, I headed over to the hot tub where there appeared to be some sort of commotion; sort of like when someone spots a shark in to ocean or when a kid craps in the pool. People were sitting on the edge of the lovely structure shaking their heads afraid to venture in.
Before I sat down, the cause for excitement came up from the bottom of the hot tub, adjusted his shorts and pulled his goggles over his balding head. Apparently Chris, my Chris, my one and only Chris had decided to go on a reconnaissance mission to the bottom of the hot tub..the full-of-people hot tub. He had donned his diving goggles taken a deep breath and down he went—-stretched out on the bottom of the hot tub. It is about 6 feet in diameter so he literally was lying head and toe touching the sides. One man commented “Well he’s getting the FULL experience isnt’t he.” Our friends were torn between defending him and pretending they did not know him. Chris, as usual, was clueless. “What? I was checking out the jets!” he explained.
I was so shaken up by the image of my professional husband laying on the bottom of the hot tub analyzing peoples feet that I decided I needed some alone time. D and S took Chris home where he could do less damage to our reputation and I stayed back at the pool
It was now full on happy hour. So, I indulged in another frozen beverage–this one 1/2 off. I am a sucker for a bargain so I felt the need to have another drink after that. The sun was setting the breeze was warm and …well two for the price of one.
Finally, I felt relaxed enough to face the truth of what I had committed my life to: a man that hot tub dives and wraps pink gigantic beach towels around his head when he can’t find his hat.
I hopped on my bike and started the two block ride home. The sun was right in front of me and I turned my face up to it while my hair blew in the breeze behind me. I gripped the handle bars of the beach cruiser lightly as my dripping bathing suit started to dry. It was an idyllic ride home…I had practically forgotten the hot tub incident when I pulled up in front of the house. Chris was walking up toward me and did not look happy. He looked…perplexed.
“Hey!” I called. I wasn’t mad at him anymore. That bike ride was just what I needed to recall all that was good in my life–goofy hubs and all.
“Um. Hey. What’s that?” Chris looked confused.
I looked around…my bag, my bathing suit, my sunglasses…none of it was new to him.
“THAT!” He was sort of hollering as he pointed to my bike.
“THAT…CHRISTINE (full name=bad) is NOT your bike. First, it is blue. Your bike is green. It is a Huffy. Yours is a Sun. It has fenders. Yours does not. And furthermore…You walked to the pool….”
The reality of my error slapped the happy hour right from within my soul. Sure enough there in the open/eye sore garage were our bikes…all of our bikes.
I looked at Chris helplessly hoping he would say something like “I will return it for you.” Or “Ah just keep it..we could use another one anyway.”
But no. He read my evil thoughts and crunched up his beach towel protected/ unsunburned face and wordlessly pointed down the street in the direction I had come.
The ride BACK to the pool was less idyllic but honestly the low point was my escape.
I crashed the bike to a halt in the spot on the rack next to its sister Huffy. I jumped off so fast that I knocked the next two bikes over. Quickly, and NOT stealthily, I glanced over my shoulder. No one was coming.
The really really low point was my hauling ass as fast as possible in flip flops and damp swim suit away from that bike rack terrified that I would be caught red handed.
In the list of events from that afternoon for some reason, inadvertently stealing and having to return a bicycle trumped the hot tub goggle voyeur, the beach towel turban and the hick truck induced tsunami wave that nearly knocked a kid over.
How does that keep happening to me?