Tarzan Versus The Bank

When I was a kid and mom loaded up the station wagon and took us four kids somewhere, it was a sight to behold.  I always wondered why she was so frazzled after going grocery shopping or to the bank with us (keep in mind these were the days before the glory of drive thru banking)...and then it happened to me...of all places, at the bank...in the lobby...making a Shoogie delivery to a client.

It was unavoidable that day and I had to take my two (usually well mannered) kids with me to drop off the order.  The day began like many others, but I had an unusually high number of delivery's to fulfill and make, so I couldn't let the kids outside to play because I couldn't supervise them and get the orders done in time.   They sat quietly watching public broadcasting and animal shows on the TV while I was cooking Shoogie orders in the kitchen.  The time flew by and finally I announced their 15 minute warning time for us to leave.

The car ride over was not that unusual except for the couple of times my kids shouted from the backseat to stop the car immediately and turn around and go back because we missed some sort of Pokemon creature...I'm sure you could hear their rationalization of why we exactly needed to get that creature...I have no idea the logic behind the game, but my kids like it, so I have to learn to like it too.

We arrived at the bank.  Now what you should know is that before we go into a public space where a certain type of behavior is needed from the kids, I lay out my expectations for them during the car ride up, and we talk and discuss what I expect to happen and what will happen if they do not meet those expectations, just so we are clear on things.  They assured me in the parking lot that they understood and I cleared them to exit the vehicle.

Everything was going well as we walked up to the  front of the bank building.  My son held the door for us, like a good gentleman, and my daughter and I thanked him and praised him for it...but then...everything shifted.  As he entered the large lobby area, his eyes became wide like saucers, he looked up at the winding staircases, the elevators, all the luxurious looking squishy couches, open spaces, lush plants, and I swear to you, it was like an ancient spirit of a lost boy, or better yet, Tarzan entered into his body through his eyes into his imagination at that very moment.

"Mom, whoah!" He said in a hushed awe at the sprawling space.

My son, the gentleman, was lost... and somewhere inside my son, escaped a boy that was like Tarzan.

My hands were full with my Shoogie deliveries for my client that worked at one of the offices in the top floor of the bank, so catching him before he darted off into the "jungle' was impossible at that moment.  I calmly asked one of the ladies at the front desk if she could please notify my client that I was there with her packages, then talked briefly with her about the different products that I made and delivered.  After about a minute or two, I put down the Shoogie basket and excused myself to hunt my wild Tarzan of a son down.  By now, he had enraptured his sister in this game of his and my expedition through the bank lobby became more laborious.  I was on to them, though, as I came upon their trail...a discarded shoe...okay...another shoe...a sock???  I don't even remember him putting them on today...a sweater...my daughter's flip flops...Good Lord this was getting ridiculous...his other sock...All I could think of was the silent mantra playing in my mind "Oh God, please don't let me find his t-shirt and pants next"...and then I saw them...

I wanted to laugh and cry at the same time...my two barefoot children playing an imagination game of jungle...my daughter crouched behind the tree giggling while my son crawled through the "forest floor", army style on his elbows and forearms, dragging his legs behind him as he pulled himself under one of the large squishy couches towards his sister he was trying to rescue from the tiger and the flowing lava.  He reached her and rescued her, but now they had to traverse the flowing lava without getting burnt.  I knew this game really well.  I played it as a kid.  It involved couches, and cushions, and pillows, and lots of jumping, and giggling and diving for the couch...which was exactly what was unfolding before my eyes.  Somehow in the 1-2 minutes it took them to walk inside the door, they had managed to partially disrobe, strategically place the couch pillows where they were needed as islands to escape the lava, and were now diving for the land (AKA the couch) simultaneously.

It was like a movie in slow motion.  I was lunging towards them, they were mid air, and my client was coming out of the set of doors leading to the lobby.

You want to discuss first impressions with me...OH, I NAILED IT!   And not in the proper, gracious way that I had envisioned.  Then again, with kids, nothing really ever goes the way that you envision it to go.  Even the most well behaved kids go Tarzan on you sometimes, and they say the most true, ridiculous, best things, that are by no means politically correct, but I wouldn't trade these moments of mortification for anything less because "A" they make great memories and "B" they make for a heck of a story...and isn't that what life is about...memories and the stories that get told because of them.

I don't know if anyone else in the bank that day has told this story from their point of view, but looking back it is a bit funny, even though I was completely mortified that day.  My Tarzan is back to being a gentleman, and I told my husband I am fine with mailing my Shoogie orders from now on if he isn't able to stay with my sometimes wild-lings.

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