Parachutes and a camera in the basement

I’m at our local YMCA (next door to the McDonald’s Devil no less), in the kids gym with my son Ari, for his friend Aaron’s 4th birthday party. There are a bunch of little ones playing ‘Alligator Under The Parachute,’ which mostly seems to involve waving a large round canvas up and down and darting under it as it flutters to the floor. Lots of laughs.

Wish I had a camera with me to capture my little guy. But it’s at home, not exactly forgotten, but not remembered either.

We are blessed to have a nice home, especially in these tough economic times. Sure, we’ve had our share of setbacks like everyone else, but we’ve never missed a mortgage payment. The old house is too important to us. It’s a typical New England colonial, with a brick front and dated vinyl siding, about 75-years-old, two stories plus a decent finished basement. It’s falling apart here and there, but the kids have beautiful, light-filled rooms, and it’s warm in the winter, cool in the summer heat. My problem with the house is the basement, and the two stories above it. More properly, it’s with the stairways that connect the floors.

I can never decide what’s creakier – those old stairs or my beat-up knees. I don’t have the camera to take snaps of Ari and his friends because it would’ve hurt too much to grab it off my basement desk. Wasn’t even a conscious decision, really. I just don’t go up or down if I can avoid it.

I guess I’ll have to be content with the memory or Ari trying to cross the balance beam for the first time, or of him in a party hat clapping as his best buddy blew out his birthday candles.

I really hate this shit. Forty-four days until surgery.

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