All’s well that end’s well

When last we spoke, our heroes had decided to put their hopes above their fears and give summer camp a second try. They survived Day 2, and were game for Day 3. To varying degrees.
Aaron was warming up to baseball camp, as much as possible. Nothing is all good or bad, he’s learning, and reminding me. Which is how the same day can hold “It’s hard to make friends when we’re so spread out all over the field” and “I made the winning catch!” and “We’re using the best batting facility in the nation” and even “My lip was bleeding because the guy punched me . . . for no reason!”

As for Emmett, he was set against having fun. (Or at least letting me know he was having fun. Information trickles out days later, things like “I was the best one at gymnastics.”)

Today was “Wild West Day.” Campers were encouraged to wear their cowboy clothes. Lucky for us we had just been to the Calgary Stampede. But, wait, the only cowboy clothes he got were bedroom slippers that looked like cowboy boots–in camoflauge design. We’re creative, broadminded types, which is how it came to pass that Emmett went off to camp in slippers and University of Texas Longhorns basketball uniform.

He and Ihad reached a deal this morning: I’d pick him up early from camp and take him to a swimming lesson. He was waiting for me when I arrived at 1:01 p.m., sitting on a tree stump and wearing his backpack. Truth is, he did look bored. A few other kids were traipsing about with a hose, appearing to enjoy themselves. The young counselors were watching, not much was happening. He saw me and immediately stood up and started to make his exit. First he went over to where his tie-dye t-shirt was still drying, hoping to take it and escape.

“It’s still wet,” his sweet young counselor said. “You can take it home tomorrow, Emmett,” she smiled kindly.

He didn’t so much as glance her direction. His face was serious and he bored holes into my eyes. “Mom,” he said in a raspy voice. “Tomorrow we are coming for the shirt, then I am getting back in the car. OKAY???”

We left it open. I still have work to finish, after all. And it’s okay if he’s bored; at least no one’s making him do push-ups.

After we picked up Aaron, we celebrated their freedom with ice cream. Home at last, we combined the best of both boys’ camps in our front yard: Cowboy Baseball.

Here it is, with Aaron’s batting helmet replacing the cowboy hat Emmett won today for “singing loud.”

All’s well that end’s with ice cream, baseball and boots.

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