For the second year in a row this house in my neighborhood has rented this jumpy thing for their front yard during the fall festival weekend. They’re right along the parade route and we usually sit across the street from it and watch in envy as the kids frolic in the inflated bouncy thing and the adults gather on the picnic bench in the driveway or greet their acquaintances on the sidewalk, or run into the house for more chips or some hot cocoa and a light jacket to ward off the chilly fall breeze.
It’s so idyllic that it makes me ill. It’s probably a group of several families – perhaps all related or perhaps some are family and some are just friends and they all chip in for the rental of the jumpy thing and arrive with carloads of adorable kids and armloads of snacks to spend a lovely weekend frolicking in the atmosphere of fall and friendship.
I guess I’m jealous because I don’t know that many people. I mean I can count on one hand the number of people I know that would actually come to my house if I threw a party. And then there’s all those little kids forging fond memories of bonking heads inside that bouncy thing and my poor Aaron has pretend friends and begs us to take him 6 hours away to my brother-in-law’s house at least twice a month so he can play with his cousins.
The only thing that gets me by is that pretty soon he’ll start school and he’ll make some friends and maybe I’ll meet some moms and things will get better. Plus it’s probably not all that idyllic in reality. I mean the people who own the house are probably so ticked off by the end of the weekend that they’re ready to take an icepick to that inflatable thing and send everyone packing. They’ve had ungrateful kids trampling through the house and Uncle Mike probably gave them some lame excuse as to why he couldn’t cough up the $50 for his share of the bouncy thing, and the toilet backed up from being used by 30 people in a matter of an hour, Aunt Sherry brought her chihuaha that always pisses on the carpet, Grandpa got drunk and climbed in the bouncy thing to sleep it off and their second cousin probably showed up in a trashy mini skirt with the tattooed carney guy that runs the “Mission to Mars Massacre” ride.
Thinking of it that way makes me feel a little better.