Zane bounced into the school office with confidence, a smile on his face. He stopped dead in his tracks when he saw me standing there, red-faced and winded. Immediately he asked, “What’s wrong?” And taking a step backward added, “What did I do?”
“This is your future, son. Get used to it,” I thought to myself but only smiled and reassured him that he had done nothing wrong.
You see, I went for a run yesterday. That in and of itself is no great revelation for I run often. I had about an hour maybe a tad more before I needed to pick the kids up from school so I figured I could get in a few easy miles. It was a beautiful day and the change in scenery from by usual route would be refreshing. I parked the car at a nearby park, stowed my wallet and keys in the center console, gathered by iPod and earbuds, stepped out of the car and locked it. Our car has one of those coded keypads on the door that enables you to leave your keys and other cumbersome items behind when carrying them — like say, on a run — would be inconvenient.
It’s a nice feature and I use it constantly.
The run was pretty much what I was hoping for on such a gorgeous day. Pleasant. Warm. Scenic. Refreshing.
Yet, deep down, I had a nagging feeling that something was not right. Something was off and I couldn’t quite shake it. Still, I ran on. When I made it back to my car I realized what was wrong. I had absolutely no idea what the code was to unlock the door. The code I’ve used thousands of times to gain entry into my car had completely escaped me. I tried every combination I could think of. There’s a 3 in it, I just know it. Yet after each attempt to unlock door the little plunger just lay there. Inanimate. Unresponsive. I was shut out!
Fortunately, the kids’ school was only about a mile away so I started off in that direction. Zane would know the code.
The school secretary did an admirable job keeping a straight face as I explained my situation to her. I also thanked her for not announcing over the school’s intercom speakers that reason Zane was being called to the office was because his lunatic dad had forgotten the code to get into the car.
“Yes, Zane. I know there’s a 3 in it but I honestly have no idea what the code is. I tried several times but I just can’t remember.”
“Dad! There’s no 3 in the code!”
He then proceeded to write down the correct code for me.
I’m not sure but I think I may have heard him apologizing to the school secretary and principal as I left the office. I smiled to myself at the thought that this will probably not be the last time one of my kids will be called from whatever task they may be engaged to help out their increasingly forgetful dad.