I was asked to be a parent volunteer to go to the pumpkin patch on a field trip. Monkey Boy was super excited about going. He said he wanted me to come along. It seemed like a perfectly lovely plan, so I agreed.
Except, we didn’t go to a pumpkin patch. We went to Wildwood Park. Now every other mother on this field trip seemed to have bits of information I didn’t. It’s possible they actually read the notes that are sent home. First, they seemed to know where Wildwood is. So right away it was clear they looked this up in advance, which is cheating. Second, they all seemed to know that Wildwood isn’t a pumpkin patch, but a hay ride “resort.”
Side note: I am severely allergic to hay. I have been on exactly one hay ride in my life and it very nearly sent me to the hospital. So when it came time for the Monkey Boy’s class to pile up on the trailers, I had to tell his teacher that wasn’t really gonna work out for me. This woman already believes I’m derelict. My opt-out plan I cooked up on the fly was less than optimal.
Having failed to do anything but deposit my child at the non-pumpkin patch, I decided to make the best of my unplanned alone time. I walked around a bit and snapped some photos of the property. It really is quite lovely. I met up with the kids and respectable mothers at the hay fort. Everyone seemed to be having a good time.
Then it was time for a group photo. Monkey Boy wasn’t done playing. According to the clock in his head, he should have had more time to jump off hay bales and run around like a wild child. So he did what any rational 4-year-old would do: he melted down. In the yearbook, approximately 39 preschool kids will be smiling happily for the camera on their super fun field trip. Monkey Boy will be in the death grip of a teacher wailing because his life.is.over.
The situation never really improved after that. He cried because he didn’t like his snack. He cried because he hit his head. (Actually, that probably really did hurt.) He cried because someone got to pick a better pumpkin than him. (After snack, the kids get to pick from imported pumpkins to take home. Because our trip to the pumpkin patch was to a place that doesn’t. grow. pumpkins.) We finally piled up in the car and mercifully went back to school. I’m not sure Monkey Boy wins the prize for biggest fit ever on that property, but he’s easily in the Top 10.
Baby Daddy asked me how I enjoyed my first field trip as a parent volunteer, “It could have gone better.”