Last Friday I took the girls to another lovely Cape Cod town to visit with their grandparents. The five of us went out for ice cream. We were sitting at a picnic table outside the ice cream shop enjoying our treats, when along comes another family... Mom, Dad, a grandmother, and two boys. Ice cream on a beautiful summer day, popular thing to do, smiles all round.
Smiles, until one of the little brats pulls down his pants in the sidewalk and urinates in a giant arc, right on to the ice cream shop building, while his parents stand by and do nothing.
We couldn't believe it.
So as an innocent ice cream customer, do you say something to these boors? Or do you just shake your head in disgust and let it go?
Well, if you're me... and if you've had it with loud, ill-mannered, littering, tailgating summer visitors* and their whining spoiled rotten children... you can't let it go. It's just not OK.
So, gesturing toward the piss stain not yet dry in the sun, I cheerfully asked this family if they pee on the walls at home, too? They stared as if I had two heads. "What did she say?" they said to each other. I smiled, happy to repeat. "What I said was, 'Do you pee on the walls of your own home? Or is that just something special you've set aside to do on vacation in our community?'"
They did have the good grace to reprimand the kid and leave.
Now, I know public toilets are really hard to come by on Cape Cod's quainter main streets. It can be frustrating for residents and visitors alike; all those "No Public Restroom" signs start to seem kind of hostile.
But still. About a year ago, at this very same ice cream shop, my Peanut suddenly had to Pee Right Away! She was new to the whole underpants gig then, and there was no telling her to hold it. But did I tell her "oh, just drop trou and piddle in the walkway"? Of course not. We scooted around behind the hedge at the back of the building and discreetly made the best of an urgent situation. And if that kid had come round back and modestly peed on the hedge, I'd have had no problem with it whatsoever.
So with that lovely encounter fresh in my mind, I have to say that I felt no pangs of sadness whatsoever about the many-mile backup of off-Cape traffic today. Buh-bye!
*admittedly, and thankfully, this is only a subset of summer visitors. Some of my best friends are summer visitors... true story!