INTERNATIONAL WATERS

Photo by Ave Calvar Martinez on Pexels.com

My sister reminded me of this embarassing incident yesterday. She says it’s one of her favorite triplet stories. It’s one of those recollections you wait several years to find humorous. Since almost a decade has passed, I suppose the statute of limitations has run out. I was MORTIFIED when it occured and projected the delinquency of my brood into adulthood. I saw them ruining their lives before they even began.

It started as a nice, peaceful evening at home. My husband took our 8th grade sons and a few friends swimming at the pool. He was being selfless to go with them, I thought. He took a book and planned to perch poolside and read while chaperoning. The pool would not allow those under 16 unattended. Unbeknownst to him, the group left the pool area and hit the nearby beach merely yards away. This is when the situation began to rapidly deteriorate.

There were rocks projecting into the bay and those were not to be climbed. That was a posted rule. Apparently, my sons saw others do it and decided they wanted to also. As usual, they got security’s attention. Security came over and asked them to get off the rocks. Several did, but one son, with some nearby fishermen egging him on, ended up the star of the show. He wasn’t even on any rocks but was IN THE WATER. He decided to act the fool and put a bucket on his head and play dumb. The security guard was not humored and must have felt disrespected. The only thing I can think is that my “water criminal” must have been performing for his audience. He wasn’t violating anything, just being annoying. The security guard decided to make him get out of the water so nearby fishermen threw my son the line, “These are international waters, he cannot make you get out.” So my brilliant son told the security guard he could not make him get out since he was “in international waters!” This was when the security guard called the local police.

My husband, still blissfully unaware, was reclining and reading close by without his cell phone. He had no clue that our shirtless, shoeless sons were slammed to the sand, cuffed, and shoved in a patrol car and “taken downtown.” Two of the group quietly made their unobserved exit away from the crime scene. And that was how only three culprits were detained. The police had no idea who did what. They just knew some people were disturbing the peace of this nice establishment. The security guard was no where to be found and neither was my husband, their dutiful chaperone.

I got the dreaded phone call from the police station. This set off panic swirling through my head, “What happened? Who’s hurt? WHAT DID THEY DO?” I frantically tried calling my husband but couldn’t reach him. The boys said I needed to come right away so I arrived eyeing three, barefoot, bathing suit- clad boys surrounding an officer’s cubicle. Feeling a mix of shock, embarassment, anger and bewilderment, I inquired what happened and the officer stated he got a call that “someone was possibly inebriated and disrupting the area.” He then took a solemn tone and told them he would be looking for them to mess up again. What I think thawed his tone was MY come apart. My intense, domineering, mega-mom freak came out. By the time I finished, he commented, “I see you will handle this.” No charges were brought, no recording of the crime, no delinquency was registered that day. The mom of their friend, however, stopped being mine.

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