the bottom keeps falling

While the kids are still young enough to have joint birthday parties (they are 3 weeks apart), we are taking full advantage. This year we reserved a shelter at the Carl Cowan park which has a Splash Pad. The theme was Thomas the Tank Engine and we bought most of the party stuff in Thomas colors, just not the Thomas brand. We did get the Thomas table clothes and Thomas goody bags, but that was it.

I only worked 1/2 day, which meant that I wouldn’t have a running workout at lunch, and ran a bunch of errands to fetch the last birthday stuff. While still at work, I get an email saying that the AC is not working. *sigh*

Getting to the house will all the stuff, the AC is not working, and so the calls go to the AC guy to see if he can come by and see what’s the problem but there was still a party to create.

It was a nice hot day. The house was a balmy 82 degrees inside, but the nice thing was that we were going to be out for the most part.

Jen and I brought all the supplies over to the park while Cris was getting the boys ready and bringing them over before her class.

We had the shelter from 4pm to 9pm, but then when does a 2yo & 4yo party last that long? So we arrived around 4:15 and started to set up. The goal was to play until 5:30, then eat, open presents and go play again until whenever.

People started showing up around 4:45 and played for a good 40 minutes. We broke out the BBQ at 5:30 and at 5:35 a storm blew into the area. And when I saw storm, we were trying everything to keep the table cloth on the tables. The rain was hitting the metal roof and people were yelling, not to be mean, but to be heard! Puddles of water started forming outside the shelter and the rain was relentless.

The rain lasted for about 20 minutes non stop, and then it died off pretty quickly. We decided to have cake at this time. Everything was find and dandy… enjoying the cake, when all of a sudden over the murmur of the chatter comes,

“RAY, RAY, Get Over Here NOW!”

Ray, the dad that was showing me the animated weather on his mobile phone, slowly gets up to see what is the matter.

“RAY! Hurry up, your son has a HOOK in his foot!!!”

The crowd swarmed over to J, who was screaming at this point mainly due to the huge hunk of metal hanging out of his foot. Carl Cowan park is adjacent to the Tennessee River and there are some spots open for people to fish. Someone, hopefully by accident, lost this hook and is missing it dearly. But this IS East Tennessee and well…

“What Kind of IDIOT leaves a Hook Hanging out,” yells Ray. Pointing out that this IS East Tennessee was not prudent at this time. J’s head was in Jenn’s lap, while Ray had J leg pinned down to lessen the flailing which may drive the hook deeper into his foot.

I would love to say that at this point, I ripped off my shirt and tie and underneath was blue tights with a big red first aid plus on my chest. But alas, I was not wearing a suit and tie and do not own blue tights plus, I too was in a state of mini-shock as this was all going down. But this was my kid’s party and so I went in to look at the hook.

The Hook albeit was really really big (I don’t the fish in river are this big, oh wait… there’s Oak Ridge in the neighborhood) it was not bleeding.

“Ray,” I said grabbing a water bottle. “I am going rinse the dirt off to clean it off and get a better view.”

“J, I am going to pour water on your foot,” I tried to tell him, but does a 4yo with a big mofo hook coming out of his foot really listen well? So I pour water on the top of his foot and then poured the water over his foot and cleared out all the dirt and debris.

While this was going on there was a plea for anyone with some sort of medical background to help out. Another mother, one of those mothers that has EVERYTHING in her vehicle ran to get a First Aid kit – those moms are the best.

“Ray, it doesn’t look deep, I think that I can pull it out. The angle is shallow enough and the barb doesn’t appear to be hooked”

So, one of the other mom’s who is a nurse, but due to the legalities of today’s society really can’t do much of anything, helped by getting the hook out and applying direct pressure on the wound. I started wrapping the wound with gauze. J’s screaming and squirming subsided and the energy of the shelter also returned to a normal calm.

Everything was back to normal and we went on to normal birthday activities. Even though we specifically asked for NO PRESENTS, people still brought some presents and they were cool presents, too.

As people were leaving, one of that Dad’s commented on the birthday party.

“Man, you really know how to put on an exciting birthday party.”


Post Script: J’s foot is just fine. His parents cleaned it out that night and didn’t look too bad. He had a tetanus shot the next day.

Post Post Script: We weathered that Birthday Monsoon, but at our house, just 3 miles (as the crow flies) was dry… no rain what so ever!

About planet3rry

I'm a husband, father and runner in the Knoxville area. I love the way that running makes me feel and how it has changed my thinking. I am always looking for the new PR whether in the 5k or the marathon