Being Friday the 13th was a little bit of a concern, but that’s only because I’m superstitious and worry about such things.
It was only earlier this week that I decided the overwhelming desire to go to paintball turned into a need, so I sent a message to the year 7 teacher organising the excursion asking if he needed ‘parent helpers’.
I’ve been on every other excursion this year, so why not?
His reply was that he didn’t so much need parent helpers as a backup team as he was fairly sure he was going to be set upon by his students.
He was probably right.
I organised my day so I could accompany the year 7 class, and got myself organised, all the while listening to Grumpy Pants snigger as he pointed at me, reminding me every few moments that “You’re gonna get slaughtered!” and laughing maniacally.
School lunches up first, including a lunch for myself.
After a full-year-minus-one-week one would think I had learnt all there is to learn and to leave Monkey Boy’s lunch till last. He has fewer restrictions in what he is allowed to take, and takes much less. It’s far easier for me to manage any lunch-inclusion deficiencies on the off chance (more common than I like) we are out of something.
Also, he is allowed peanut butter, which the other two aren’t, so if I make his peanut butter sandwiches first and then discover we’re out of bread well, basically, I’m fucked. I can’t transfer his lunch to a younger siblings lunchbox and I just create more work and stress for myself.
So, this morning, I made his lunch first … *sigh* … discover we are out of bread, run out to the backup freezer, find no bread in there and ask Monkey Boy where he put the bread I bought not two days ago.
He reaches into the kitchen freezer and extracts a loaf of bread.
“This,” I tell him. “This is why I told you several times to put it into the back freezer. You can’t just stuff it into the freezer like you did. THIS is what happens!”
I mutter some profanity under my breath.
He looks slightly remorseful, and says “Um. Whoops.”
Being the compassionate sort he is, he does try to rectify it by uttering “Perhaps you could do some bread art in the school lunch?”
He barely escapes being clubbed to death with a block of frozen, sandwich-sliced wholemeal bread.
That done, I shower as I tell him to help his youngest brother don shoes and find my Myki card for the excursion. The aim of all that was to save time.
Several minutes up the road, as we have left some three minutes later than I wanted to, due to him fucking about and not putting shoes on, I discover he has also not got my public transport card and I am forced to turn back home. The petrol light also comes on.
Do the round trip of dropoffs and race to his school, park and run inside to meet the group.
Frazzled, hot and sweaty before we begin.
Another mum has come along to join the fun/create and ally for the rest of we adults.
That makes three of us.
Arrive at destination via bus and two trains, find decent cafe, purchase coffee and get my Lara Croft on.
I was very much looking forward to an hour or so of running around like a maniac, shooting paintballs at a bunch of teenagers – as nice as this bunch are.
That is precisely what I did, and even managed to restrain myself and not run out screaming ‘FUCK YOU, MOTHERFUCKERS!”, Samuel L. Jackson style, whilst wielding a double-pump action blue plastic gun.
I think that is an achievement in itself and am very proud of myself for employing such restraint.
I did do a bit of a Braveheart style scream and run at one point. All that did was cause all the other kids on my team to do the same thing. So that was fun. I do worry about my influence on the younger generation sometimes, though.
Finishing up, I was most disappointed because a) being a kids group, we only got teensy paintballs to use and they barely left a mark. A sign of a good day out is impressive bruise, graze or need for more than one bandaid, in my opinion.
And b) I had SO. MUCH. FUN! I wanted to keep going.
Like when I went abseiling and skydiving, I hit the ground and all I wanted to do was DO IT AGAIN!
I also got stuck in my overalls when taking them off, which I think was a sign that I should have been allowed to play. Especially as I did shoot three kids in the bum during our session.
Karma is a bitch, however. One of them got me back in the left bum cheek.
I copped a few head shots, too, and was left with orange paint running down my safety goggles. I left it, feeling imagining your brains running down your face and partially obscuring your vision was all part of the fun.
I also haven’t done such a hard workout, nor sweat so much in a long time.
I looked pretty freaking glamorous by the time we finished.
This only led to Monkey Boy being even more mortally embarrassed than at the commencement of the game, as he’d spent most of the morning begging me not to wear a singlet at all, even if it was going to be covered by overalls.
More public transport home, where I did at least have a change of top. Hair sweaty and limp, face and body feeling like it was caked in who knows what, big smile on my face.
I did try to convince the teacher I was a responsible adult, but he only replied by saying “Um, I just watched you shoot up a bunch of kids.”
“Yea, but …” I reply. “Yeah, ok, you have a point.”
Arrive back at high school, immediately head to office to fix up a payment and attempt to collect a few things I was supposed to do yesterday – they had a special day organised specifically for such things – but didn’t get around to.
Race to primary school, still looking fabulous, to collect middlest child and home for a much needed shower.
After which, I did four loads of washing, sitting quietly in between each load, my body screaming “You’re not thirteen any more!” at me via a series of mild aches, pains and tightness.
“SHUT UP!” my brain told my body. “I can if I want!”
Which, if I think about it, is more eight-year-old than thirteen-year-old mentality.
But I DON’T CARE and YOU CAN’T MAKE ME!
I had a blast anyway.
A nice way to finish the school year as my first year as the mum of a high school kid.
I hope next year is just as much fun!