Greg to the Rescue

It was a perfect fall day. The sun was warm, the breeze was cool, and the leaves were spectacular. And I was a free woman with absolutely no commitments for the day.

I needed an adventure.

“What do you want to do today?” I asked my husband…too late, as it turned out. He was already on the phone to his website debugging buddy.

Just as my thoughts turned unhappily to my to-do list, the phone rang. Whew.

“What ya doin?” my daughter asked. “Want to go on a long walk?”

Still, I played hard to get.

“Umm. Let me see if your father has a better offer for me…”

We all knew better. My husband stayed on the phone, and may have been anticipating the nap that might be within reach after I left.

“OK. What about going into the woods?” I suggested.

It was an impulsive suggestion. The woods used to be safe. Now they are full of ticks, hidden roots and slippery leaves. And, while I was thinking on the advisability of a long walk through the middle of nowhere with my grandson on my daughter’s back, I remembered something else. I had taken a long walk just the day before, and half way through, my ankles had started to really hurt.

The responsible thing to do, I thought, was call her back, and beg off. So I got in the car and headed to her house.

“I have a trail that I want to try.” she said. “Ryan’s brother says it goes around a reservoir. If your ankle hurts, we’ll just turn around.”

“No, no, I’m good, I need an adventure.” I declared.

I love the woods, and it was a beautiful day. Have I said that already? The path was mostly wide, the view was spectacular, and no one tripped. When Itty Bitty (otherwise known as Max) started to get fussy, my daughter switched him from the front pack to the back and he immediately fell asleep. Then, just as I became to tire, the trail turned into a short paved road that offered a panoramic view of the water.

“My foot doesn’t hurt as bit.” I lied as I happily anticipated a short walk back to the car. It looked like we were about three-quarters of the way around.

My husband texted me that he was about to take a nap, and I concluded that today, everyone was happy.

We did run into a…slight bump. The path disappear and suddenly we were walking a rocky beach, and stepping over a number of fallen trees.

Have you ever been in a guilt loop? I was wondering about my fitness as a grandmother, as my daughter climbed over trees with the baby on her back. Meanwhile, she fretted over her fitness as a daughter given my weak ankle.

“This is excellent” I declared, a bit too cheerfully. “I was hoping for an adventure. Umm…” I added. “we should remember to check each other for ticks.”

“Check my baby’s head.” she said a bit tersely.

But our worries were for naught. The trail resumed, and I anticipated a short walk to the car…until we ran into Route 95.

The trail stopped abruptly, and there was nothing but a bank of large rocks leading up to a wire fence.

“Didn’t your brother-in-law say it went all the way around?”

“I need to talk to him.”

I thought. “Maybe we could just hang on to the fence, skip from rock to rock and get back to the car?”

Then I remembered that I was 60. And that my daughter was carrying my grandson on her back. My muscles and feet remembered that we had been walking in the woods, through ticks, roots and slippery leaves for over an hour.

“Should we try to walk out to a road?” I suggested. “You have a smart phone…We could check out how far we are from the car…maybe it’s close?”

“Or maybe…” I gulped “maybe…we should, you know…call for help.” I knew that my daughter, super-woman, would not like this suggestion. “My ankles hurt.” I reluctantly added, only to persuade her…

“Umm….who we gonna call?” she asked.

We were silent again. My husband was taking a nap. Her husband was at work in Waltham. We could go back the way we came. It was only an hour or so. Macho Grandma Ane battled Wimp Grandma Ane.

“Greg!” I suddenly exclaimed. “Greg! Remember when Super-Grandpa recused him? And me? When Max wouldn’t eat? Greg really needs bragging rights. He’d be able to tell our husbands that we called him first…We’d only be doing it for him.”

I think I have the right to be really proud of my talents at rationalization.

My daughter pulled out her phone.

“Greg! What ya doing?” she asked cheerfully. “You see…” she explained. “We don’t know where we are, we don’t know where our car is, we’ve been walking for over an hour and a half, Mom’s ankles are shot, and Max is waking up…”

True story. All men all just really want to be hero’s.

“All right! I’ll put Abel in the car. Just give me a street a house number, and we’ll fly!”

Afterward, I thought to myself, I might really be growing up. Maybe I did go on a walk when my ankles hurt. Maybe I did encourage my daughter to put my grandson on her back and walk through ticks, roots, and slippery leaves. Maybe I did refuse to walk back when my feet first started to hurt. Maybe I did refuse to call my napping husband or Tracy’s working husband.


We called our heros: Greg and Abel.

“Abel?” quizzed my daughter, after we were all back at her house. “What did you and Daddy do? Rescue? Can you say Rescue? Did you rescue Grandma Ane, and Auntie Tracy? Abel? What did you and Daddy do?

“Daddy got in car and said Hi…”

Oh well, no-one gets respect from their children.

Whatever. It was a perfect fall day, my daughter and I had an adventure, my son and grandson were heros, and Max and Grandpa got good naps. What more could anyone ask for?

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