Saturday, April 21, 2018

Happy Birthday Alexander!

February 8, 2010 by  
Filed under Patricia's Journey

The fatigue subsided a week ago.  I feel like a new woman, or the same woman with a recharged battery.  What a sweet moment of joy to wake up and know that something is different…and that something allowed me to enjoy a full day of activities with my son and his friends.

Hunter, Alexander, Cody, Mack

Today is my son’s 14th birthday.  That I have spent fourteen years living with this young person is still amazing to me.  That God chose me to be his mother and charged me with the care of this being is an honor.  Two days ago on Saturday, I drove him and his three closest friends to Island Paintball in Waimanalo.  I love listening to their conversation in the car, and occasionally, I commit the parental cardinal sin of chiming in with my opinion.

The masked men

You pay money to put on a head mask and load a gun with paintballs about 1/2″ in diameter in order to shoot at each other.  Call me biased but this must have been a guy’s idea.  First, you buy additional paintballs because the 100 that are included is just a warm up.  Of course, there are three choices and being in sales most of my life, they sell a lot of the middle box.  Some paintballs shoot more smoothly and some splat more (is this for real?)  You wear old clothing, preferably long sleeves and jeans.  The paintballs can sting.   Then you go out into this treed area for timed rounds and shoot at each other.  You come back after the round and fill up with more paintballs, drink a bottle of water, tell a few stories,  then you go out again.  Then you come out for a required 30 minute lunch break.  Mom goes to the nearest Subway and brings back one Tuna on wheat, a Cold Cut combo, a Ham on Italian Herb and a Spicy Italian.  The Spicy Italian was for me :)  You are sitting under netted tents at picnic tables.  The boys are intent on eating yet have one ear tuned to the next table.  They don’t miss a single story being told by the macho foursome. One of the dudes below was proud to pose for a picture.  No rentals for these pro paintballers; they come with their own gear.  The next most popular wardrobe choice was camouflage.  We are on a military base so this seems an appropriate leisure activity. There is a lot of testosterone running around this place.

The full regalia

There is a character strolling purposefully around the area during the break periods barking out orders.  I have nicknamed him The Lone Ranger.  He sports a unique persona, however, after  talking with him further I learned he has a master’s degree in psychology.  That’s a good thing when you have 150 people running around of various ages and dispositions with loaded paint guns that can take out your eye.  Outside of the shoot-em-up area you must keep a plug on the end of your paint gun for safety.  The Lone Ranger is on the look-out for plug offenders.  He watches them and I watch him.  It’s a great show.

The Lone Ranger

The Lone Ranger

on the look out

At 3:30 pm, after four and a half hours of strategic warfare, the game is over…only because they have blasted through their 2,000 paintballs-500 each.  They have great stories, vivid memories and splotchy clothes.  A few have a wounded spot to show off where a paintball stung.  We load up in the car for the hour drive home.  It’s warm enough for the air conditioner, so we rolled up the windows.  After a minute or so it was clear to me this wasn’t going to work.  Four young teens who have been in heavy clothing, strategizing in the jungle, running from the enemy in the heat of the Hawaiian sun?  I turned off the air conditioner and open the windows for some much needed fresh air.  Life is good.


2 Responses to “Happy Birthday Alexander!”
  1. Jan Johnson says:

    Happy 14th birthday Alexander! I remember when you were just a bump in your mom’s womb! Sounds like the perfect birthday experience!! Jan

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