The Snow Day.
Let me tell you about my day yesterday.
It began with a major snowstorm and the public schools closing because of the weather. My wife went to work, leaving me and my five-year-old son home to entertain each other… and by that, I mean I need to come up with countless ways to entertain him. He sees the first snowfall of the year here in New England, so of course he wants to go out and play in it. I can’t blame him. It looks awesome out there. So I promise him that we’ll go out and play in the snow.
And then everything starts to go wrong.
The snowsuit he wore last year is now too small for him. The pant legs ride up past his ankles at the slightest lift. I go looking for his boots, only to discover my wife has gotten rid of all his winter boots from last year. I think to myself, “Okay, I can salvage this. All I have to do is jump in the car and drive to a store to get him a new snowsuit and boots for today!” I go looking for the car keys, only to discover my wife has taken all the car keys with her to work. Walking somewhere is out of the question, as the sidewalks on our street have not been shoveled and the snow comes up to my shins.
I realize I am stuck in the house with a five-year-old who just had his promise to play out in the snow seemingly broken by his dad. I tried to think up other things to do but he kept looking out the window longingly.
So, I improvised.
I stuffed him into his too-small snowsuit and strapped on an old pair of sneakers I wouldn’t mind seeing ruined. I shoveled out a path to our backyard and carried him through the gate because the snow was too deep for someone not wearing boots. I put him down on his sled and proceeded to pull him around our backyard, him gliding atop the snow and me trudging through it. I walked a path back and forth, back and forth, until a packed-down sled path was made. Now he could sled up and down that smooth path and walk around without getting his sneaker-clad feet soaking wet!
That all worked until it didn’t. He used the sled until he got bored with it, then began pelting me with snowballs (which, I confess, was pretty fun). He strayed off my path into the deep snow so often that his feet and legs got wet anyway. And just when I was halfway done with making another path for him to walk on, complete with a snow pillar obstacle course, he whined that he was too cold and I had to carry him back through the snow to the house.
As I write this, I am tired and sore as hell from our snow day. I had fun with the little guy despite our limitations. And my wife came home from work a little early to relieve me of my fatherhood duties so I could get back to work.
I hope I can keep him entertained again. The schools are closed for another snow day today.