Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The world's most gullible grandpa

My father was very strict with us growing up - no back talk, no arguing, curfews, rules, chores, being grounded, etc. As a grandpa, he is a total pushover. The kids don't just walk all over him. They run all over him. He came to town to help out for a couple days. I had out patient surgery so he played chauffeur, nurse and errand boy. His real job was to do whatever the grandkids asked/ordered. Upon his arrival, chaos breaks out. The kids fight over his attention. Christian wants books read to him. Sara wants to go on nature walks. This morning he drove Sara to school. This wasn't just a drive-by and drop her off at the curb. No, he had to carry her backpack and lunch bag. He had to escort her to her classroom and meet her teacher. Then he took Christian to a park and watched him race all over. Next on his long chore list was taking me to my surgery. He got to sit around, answer a long list of questions and promise not to pull my plug. My dad is a worrier. This was simple, easy, non-life threatening out-patient surgery and he probably had the head of the Mayo clinic on speed dial. I'm sure he peppered my surgeon with more questions than he answered during his medical board exams. Next was filling prescriptions and driving me home. Upon our arrival, both kids descended on him like a soldier returning from the 100 Years war. They went on nature walks, explored the lake, tried to fish. (Jesus would have a hard time doing his fish and loaves tricks with my kids' fishing skills). After dinner, the mandatory trip to the bookstore took place. This involves my kids making sad faces and handing him every book in the store. Armed with their loot, the obligatory bedtime battles ensued. One Grumpy,2 tired grandkids. Sophie's choice time. He just stands in the hallway looking confused until we point him in the right direction. First was talk-time with Sara. This was interrupted because Christian couldn't go to bed without Grumppy reading at least 2 books. Sara, discovering that her Grumpy time got cut short, negotiated for more time. Being a pushover and not having to deal with the aftermath of a 3rd grader staying up way past bedtime, he quickly agreed. No one but those 2 know what occurs or is discussed during their talk-time. They both claim attorney-client privilege. She has already declared that he will eat breakfast and drive her to school tomorrow before being allowed to head home. Grumpy came to everyone's rescue. Paul got to stay home with Christian so I didn't have to worry about him all day. The kids got their Grumpy time. And we managed to score a really nice dinner out before my surgery. It was a win-win-win for all.

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