I love our local feed store. The place is nearly magical. I can’t go there without getting swept up in the plants, the beautiful pots, the adorable kids’ activity sets, the idea of having farm animals, a large garden, an orchard, beehives, a big tree that I sit under to read while the kids frolic in the meadow and eat snacks straight from the garden….
What was I talking about again? Riiight….feed store. So we ran out of chicken feed yesterday, and of course, that landed us at the feed store. My plan was to divert my eyes away from the plants, but as Caleb and the kids could tell you, that rarely works. After unloading all the kids and getting Mary into the stroller, we meandered over to the herb plants for a quick gander.
The feed store is right off Main Street in Keller, at the corner of Johnson Road. They recently constructed a beautiful wooden gazebo-type structure on the side of the store, next to Johnson Road. Under it, they keep their plants and herbs, as well as a play kitchen, a bench, and a few other things to keep the kids and husbands from losing their sanity while the plant-loving lady folk agonize over which foliage to take home before eventually buying one (or more) of everything. It’s very well thought out.
On this particular trip, I had my good friend, Elizabeth, with me. While Sam and Maya pretended to cook lunch, Titus carefully took inventory of every available plant, and Mary sat peacefully in the stroller, Elizabeth and I ooh-ed and ahh-ed over the herb selection. Though I am notorious for all but moving in to plant nurseries (or at least it seems so considering the amount of time I can spend in one), we had only been there for about three minutes before I did a quick headcount and was consequently horrified.
No, no one was missing or wandering in the busy street. Everyone was more or less where they should be, all except Sam who was suspiciously standing behind a metal pail containing a large tomato plant. It took me about three seconds to understand what I was seeing. There he was, pants around his ankles, his little bum covered in Star Wars underwear facing a busy street, eyes staring at me like a deer in the headlights. Apparently, it had never occurred to him to mention to me that he needed to go potty, and with all the plant life around, he must have figured we were more or less in the wild. I suppose he deserves some applause for seeing a problem and attempting to solve it on his own.
Many thoughts raced through my mind. ‘Did he actually pee on that tomato plant? Maybe MY Sam is somewhere else and this is someone else’s child. Why on earth would he think to pee outside of a store? I’ve only ever peed outdoors on summer camp overnight trips in the middle of nowhere, when I was a teenager, when there was literally no other option, and he has no idea about that! How could this happen to me?!?”
Luckily, he had not yet actually relieved himself on the plant. Apart from any insult he may have inflicted upon my ego, the only real damage done was showing off his Darth Vader knickers to a dozen passing cars. He was horrified to learn that it is actually illegal to urinate in public, and since it was a mistake due to a lack of information, he got off the hook with a very stern warning.
It just goes to show that things that we parents think are obvious are rather elusive to children. Caleb, of course, had a good chuckle about the whole ordeal that night when I recounted the event to him. “I bet the people in those cars had a good laugh!” was his response. Leave it to Caleb to help me remember that the kids are just kids and that things are much less serious than I often imagine they are.