T started Kindergarten today.
It was momentous.
Particularly for Zip.
Yesterday, we attended Lemonade Day, which, as implied, is when the Kindergartners go have lemonade and cookies with their teachers and see their classroom. We stayed the full forty-five minutes and, when I asked Tizzy on the way home what he thought of his classroom, Zip shouted, “It was great! Let’s go there again!!!”
“Umm, I’m sorry to tell you this honey, but tomorrow we’re not going to get to stay.” I sunk a little bit in my seat.
“Well, it’s only for the Kindergartners.”
“Humph! Well when I’m five, can I go to Kindergarten?”
We spent the rest of the day swimming with friends and Zip discovered a squirt gun he couldn’t live without. I told him that after Tizzy went to Kindergarten that perhaps we could find him one just like it as a special gift for the brother who had to stay home.
He went to bed.
“Where’s my gun?!” He shouted in the night.
He woke up the next morning.
“We’re gonna get my gun?!”
Tizzy has afternoon Kindergarten, so, when my mom was lamenting on the phone last night about not being able to see him off on his first day, I suggested that she drive up and join us. She did.
We got Tizzy to school early so he could sit at the picnic table and eat his lunch before class. He was so excited that my master staller sat down and gobbled down a large cheese sandwich in five minutes flat.
All the parents and grandparents and younger brothers and sisters hovered in the back of the room as their kindergartners gathered round the rainbow rug to start their day.
One boy sat down and announced, “I’m ready to go home now.”
Flash bulbs lit the room as the kids settled down for circle, and then their teacher told us that it was time to say goodbye. Half a dozen eyes nearly popped out of their sockets, but the rest twinkled as they waved good-bye to us.
My mom and I turned to Zip and asked him if he wanted to go have lunch.
“No, I wanna go to the toy store and get my gun.”
We got in the car, and as we drove through town, he assaulted us with, “Hey! I said I wanna get my gun!”
(Someone was feeling a bit insecure!!!)
We got to the toy store and he went up to the lady at the counter.
“Umm, excuse me. I wanna get somefing.”
“You’ve got to tell her what it is you want.” I whispered.
“I want somefing.”
“Tell her which something.”
“Umm, excuse me. Do you have squirt guns?”
She led us to a rack of rubber whales that could potentially be used as squirt guns, but they weren’t what he was looking for.
Then he turned around and saw it.
“That’s the one! That’s the gun!”
We handed him the florescent green and orange and yellow assault rifle and he gingerly carried it to the counter, where we paid for it and he got to carry it out in a big white bag.
Finally, he was ready to eat!
After lunch we still had two-and-a-half hours before we needed to be back at the school. We decided to stop by the fire house.
“This little guy’s brother started Kindergarten today,” we explained to them. “And we were wondering if perhaps there is someone who could please give him a tour of the firehouse.”
Fireman Jake gave him the tour of a lifetime.
Zip sat with him in he ambulance, he steered the fire truck, he marched all around in his fire hat, and he showed Fireman Jake his new squirt gun.
As we left, Fireman Jake was headed to the dry cleaners.
Zip looked up at us and said, “When I was a fireman, I kept my shirts real clean.”
We still had another hour.
We went to the park, and for the first time in his life, Zip was unarmed. He looked around at all the boys playing with their friends and brothers, and he held his squirt gun close. Without his brother, he didn’t know what to do with himself. Where he usually tears around the park, chasing kids and shouting orders, he gingerly climbed the play structures, carefully looking over the sides.
“This fire pole is too high. It looks kind of scary.”
“If I climb down this ladder, I prob-we would break my leg.”
He did finally venture down the slide, but then climbed into my lap and said, “I wanna go home. Let’s go get Tizzy.”
At long last it was time to go.
He fell asleep as soon as we got in the car.
Back at the school, the Kindergartners came bounding out of the classroom with “Chicka-Chicka—Boom-Boom” necklaces dangling around their necks.
“Chicka-Chicka—Boom-Boom!!!” Tizzy hollered as he sauntered across the parking lot.
“Hey mom! We sang Chicka-Chicka—Boom-Boom, and You Are my Sunshine, and then we read Mrs. Findergarten goes to Kindergarten, and she didn’t have a rainbow rug, or anything else for her classroom, but then she got some stuff and it started to look like Kindergarten and then we visited room four, but I don’t know the name of those teachers, but I didn’t go by myself, I went with my class because I’m a good boy...”
He climbed into the car and as he said hello to my mom he saw Zip asleep with his gun.
“Hey! What’s this squirt gun doing?” He yelled as he tried to pry it from Zips slumbering grasp.
“It’s Zip’s special squirt gun that he got from the toy store because he didn’t get to go to Kindergarten.”
“Ockh...yeah. He missed me.”
Zip woke up about half way home, and was delighted and surprised to see T sitting in the seat next to him.
Tizzy glanced over at him.
“So Zip. Did you get that squirt gun ‘cuz you missed me?”
“Look! It’s my squirt gun like those big boys!” Zip replied.
“SAAAY YOU MISSED ME!!!” He demanded angrily.
Taken aback, Zip composed himself and then looked at Tizzy earnestly.
“I really missed you when you were in Kindergarten.”