I believe I’ve already discussed the responsibilities of a grandmother when her grandchildren are visiting. Well, this week, the second time the boys have visited this summer, I put a little research into the grandfather in this equation. And I made a few discoveries along the way.,,
When the boys visit, towels, underwear, swimwear and socks melt away as though they don’t exist. Grandpa jumped into the shower and came out, dripping wet, eyes full of soap and exclaimed, ” Where are the towels on my towel rack?”
“The boys needed a towel to dry off after playing in the hose,” I said. “The towels are in the dryer.”
“They needed all the towels?” was his incredulous response as he stood in an ever-increasing puddle of water.
“Well, the dog and the cat needed towels too, didn’t they?” I answered. “There will be towels coming out of the wash in an hour or two.”
“Why didn’t you wash towels sooner?” he grumbled, attempting to dry himself on the bathroom rug and a dirty t-shirt. Apparently, it is not Grandpa’s job to do laundry.
He wandered through the house, kicking pieces of cardboard, tape, pipecleaners and tissue paper aside as he walked. “Don’t you think maybe the house should be cleaned?”
“With three days of the visit still left, are you mad?” I said, closing the cap on the glue and picking up the freezie wrappers from the counter. “It will just reappear if I put it away.”
“I really think you could keep it a little better under control,” he said, sitting down and rising quickly as he made contact with a collection of legos left in his chair. I gained from that conversation that cleaning the house of children’s chaos is not Grandpa’s job either.
“I could really go for some fancy salads and maybe a cheesecake,” he said, coming into the kitchen.
“Tough, we’re having hotdogs and mac and cheese,” I said, blowing the hair out of my eyes and I balanced the chips, pickles and ketchup on the way to the table.
“I don’t think you should feed me that stuff, just because it’s easy and the boys like it,” he said, attempting to make a hotdog look edible by drowning it in mustard. Cooking is also not Grandpa’s job, then. So just what is it?
This question was answered when I stepped out the door tonight. I tripped over the bikes and wagons in the front yard, skirted around the balls and bats and kites in the side yard and followed the sound of the shrieking into the back yard, where two boys had teamed up to totally drench Grandpa in a spirited water balloon fight. Then I remember, oh yeah, Grandpa’s job is not to cook, clean or do laundry. Grandpa’s job is to have fun! I sense an inequity in the genders here, but it isn’t likely to change. Grandma really sucks at water balloon fights!