When you’re lying there in the hospital cradling that new baby in your arms, no one tells you that you’ll never be able to wear pencil skirts without Spanx again. They don’t tell you’ve just had your very last shower with the bathroom door closed. And they certainly don’t tell you about Bouncy Castle Duty.
This week at our preschool fair, I was thrust into the wild world of oversized inflatables volunteerism. And if I could sum it up in one word it would be this:
I devoted an entire hour to hoisting kids up onto the bouncy platform thing by their feet. Most in socks, but not all. Yep, I touched a whole lot of sweaty children’s feet this weekend in the name of fundraising and community spirit.
Most of the kids were delightful. If there is a prize for well-behaved, obedient bouncy castle addicts under 6 with faces painted like superheroes, surely our school takes it by a longshot. (Let’s start a trophy case, PTA!) But then there was the 13 year-old who was taller than me. And sweatier. And, it seems, not yet much interested in underarm deodorant. Eau de Teen Boy. Delightful.
When I got home that night I didn’t think much of it, except to marvel at how I survived an entire hour in an unventilated classroom with no windows, that had been stuffed quite literally to the ceiling with coated 1000 denier nylon and hot air. But when I plucked my sweater dress off the floor the next morning, it hit me.
Hit me right in the nose, in fact.
Which makes me wonder how many other people that I had interacted with all day were privy to the delightful scent.
Apologies fellow parents. Apologies pizza delivery guy. Apologies Nate.
And that’s to say nothing of the yellow spin-art paint that it turns out was all over my back, some of it, oddly, in the same shape and size as a small child’s handprint.