Me: How much does this silly string mean to you? Are you willing to ride your bikes to Dollar Tree and buy it with your own money?
Sarah and Teri: "Yes! YES!"
M: Do you know how far it is to Dollar Tree?
Mike (googling it): It's 2.5 miles each way.
M: You want to ride your bikes FIVE miles for silly string?
T: Yep, we sure do.
M: Do you have what it takes?
T: Oh yes.
S: Well...I guess so.
I gave them a few minutes to think and discuss and be sure. I was really hoping they'd change their minds, because I didn't want to ride 5 miles myself. They didn't change their minds.
We were about 45 seconds into the ride when it started to sprinkle.
S: Mom, it's raining!
T: We're gonna get wet!
M: Our bodies probably will, but not our spirits!
T (shrugs): Ok!
A minute later, it's pouring so hard that I have to squint to see. The girls were yelling about something, but I couldn't make it out through the pounding rain. I yelled back to them, "How badly do you want this silly string?" They pedaled harder.
The rain let up when we got into town. There was a deep, wide puddle ahead in a parking lot. Teri looked at me. Sarah stopped riding. I said, "Should we?" The third-graders didn't recognize it as a Thelma & Louise moment. I wish we could have clasped hands. We all three smiled and rode as fast as we could until we blasted into that puddle, shooting mud all up our backs. We finally made it to Dollar Tree, went dripping in, and the girls counted out their change to buy two cans of silly string.
On the way home, it started raining again. Teri asked if we could stop at the school playground. The girls played on the wet playground equipment, and I flopped down on a bench on my back and let the rain hit my face. I opened my mouth and drank it. I could hear the girls squealing and laughing, and I hoped they'd never forget this afternoon.
When we got home, Noah took a picture of us:
The actual war only lasted about 30 seconds, but they said it was worth it.
|Sarah's best shot|