Friday, May 23, 2008

Sleeping Outside and Shooting Stuff

My daughter and I, as of 6pm, will have the house, the dogs, the yard, the everything all to ourselves... until about noon on Sunday. Doug and the boy are heading out with the Boy Scout troop on a camping trip. I think it is one of the few Memorial Day Weekends (not, by the way to be called "Memorial Weekend." Please, whoever started that trend, knock it off!) that we've not all been together doing either stuff or nothing.

So this is interesting.

I hope they both survive each other for the two days.

Actually, I'm sure they'll have a lot of fun. They are going to a place where there is fishing and gun shootin'. Rifles and whatnot. Skeet Shootin. Not hunting, but I'm sure the people who will be working with them are experienced hunters in their own right.

Either that or they just like to spend money shootin' stuff. Some people do.
Right Jay? :-)

Regardless, it'll be a good time. I'm starting to see the change over in what mom does for boy to what dad does for boy, and I think that Geoff's success in Boy Scouts hinges upon Doug's somewhat reluctant participation. I got him through the cub scout portion of things, without being a den mother I sure was a den mother. But mommies don't go to Boy Scouts too often (our troop involves the full family a lot, so there will be some moms there this weekend, but going forward the leader in this relationship has to be Doug).

Doug is the outdoor type, he loves it. Loves the camping and the fishing and the camping and the bonfires and camping and the everything. Y'all know it if you have been reading this blog for a couple of years (seven to be exact).

What he doesn't like is other people.

His personality profile on the Meyers-Briggs is all 100% INTROverted everythingness. Unlike me. I'm all about the E.

I am very social, very wanting to be with other people, not just my significant others or by myself. I like those times, but I do like having people over and doing stuff with other people. Doug is very very selective about who he wants to make fun with.

Until Geoff has a better grip on how to behave socially, he needs a parent in attendance. The last thing I need is for a parent to say "Geoff is thrown out of scouts or we're leaving..." and that fear lives deep in the heart of me. Naturally it falls upon us to guide him... and we do take a back seat a lot and watch from the sidelines, only on occasion pulling him aside to let him know he's doin' it wrong.

Plus, Doug needs some guys. We have no guys anymore. Wayne is in Maine and Aaron ran away to the west coast, so there really are no guys. I hope he finds a guy or two in this. Somehow.

Anyway, where they are headed won't be far away at all. On Saturday night, the troop is making dinner for the family members who are not coming on the trip, so Jess and I will go down to that.

Otherwise, Jess and I are making a list of everything we need to accomplish before she leaves for Germany in a couple of weeks. Including some new t-shirts, a haircut, and possible ear piercing.

And, successfully learning to ride that bike. Come hell or high water.

Yesterday afternoon I took Geoff to the Memorial Day observation in our town. The Boy Scouts are usually there en masse, and the Cub Scouts are invited to tag along. The high school pep band played, and were very good... and the presentation was nice. There was a 12-gun salute (four shooters, three shots... not quite 21, but... the feeling was there). I watched Geoff from far away covering his ears.

And yes, Jay (aka "Captain Buzzkill")? My son has a shell casing!!!

The guy who collected them gave him one... so we have it put away and I've passionately instructed him that it does not leave the house to go to school to be "shared" or "shown" or "told" about. Sssssh. Don't tell.

I asked my son what he thought of the ceremony as we walked away. He thought it went too long, and bemoaned the fact that the Scouts didn't get any recognition at all for being there! What a rip off!"

sunlight colorguard"Sometimes, buddy, it's not about you," I told him gently. "Sometimes it is about you recognizing others. Thanking others. You do a lot with the scouts and you get plenty of recognition... but no one has ever shot at you, or tried to kill you. You haven't had to ever hold a good friend as he died on the battlefield. You've never made the ultimate sacrifice of giving your life up for the defense of your country. Those old guys there today? You saw how few there were? Yeah? Well, there used to be a lot more, and as time goes by their numbers dwindle. But they started dwindling during the wars they fought. This ceremony is to remember them and to remember men like your Pappy who have served. Sometimes, it's about you taking time to think, thank, and give respect to others. I hope you get that."

Very special thanks to those of you reading who have served or have a loved one who has served... and if unfortunately he or she has gone to the beyond for their 'next assignment,' my deepest thanks is extended this Memorial Day weekend.

On that note, my men are gone, my daughter is napping, the dogs are fed and I have a dinner date with ... the cub scout moms from Geoff's former den. The connections still last for me, and I'm looking forward to my night out with people I haven't spent any real time with since December. More later.

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