Last night, we went to our small town’s Halloween Parade. Before it starts, the local businesses hold a Trick or Treat and the library has activities, so my friend and I headed down early to the girls could enjoy themselves before meeting up with their cheer squad to ride along in the float.
There is nothing like Halloween to bring out the crazy. We saw our fair share of skanky costumes, pushy parents, misbehaving kids, and general impoliteness, of course, but the kids had fun. At one point, as we were making our way down a crowded sidewalk, we noticed a woman standing there wearing the most hideous, pants that you have ever seen – they were possibly pajamas – pink and furry and tight. We saw her a few times over the course of the evening and every time, she looked crazier and nastier than the last. But when we passed her on the sidewalk, she was talking – both to the person on her cell phone and a person standing next to her and taking up valuable space on the already crowded walk. I remember thinking that people without kids should really try to get the hell out of the way and let the kids through.
Shortly after we passed her, I noticed a little boy walking very close to me. It was so crowded that I didn’t really think anything of it – just assumed his parents were behind me. That is, until we walked about a block further and away from the main area. We went to sit down on a bench and noticed that Buzz Lightyear had joined us. I realized that this little boy had just sort of attached himself to me. I asked him if he was lost and he said yes. He told me his name was Andrew. He seemed a little vacant, but I assumed it was because he was scared. So I asked him who he was there with and he didn’t answer. I asked if he was with his mom and he said no. The same for his dad. I asked who he was with again and he said his dad. It became clear pretty quickly that this little boy was special needs. So I took his hand and led him back into the fray, hoping to find a frantic parent looking for him. Otherwise, I figured I’d pass him on to the first police officer I came across.
He wasn’t afraid of me at all – he willingly took my hand as we walked around. Because he wasn’t able to communicate much, I had no idea of a last name, who we were looking for, what they looked like. I tried to jest walk slowly to give the parents a chance to spot him. And hoo-boy, did they. I heard a screeching, “Where were you!?! “ and looked up to see none other than Miss Crazy Playboy Bunny Pants heading towards us.
I could tell that she was
CRAZY AS SHIT a little upset, so I tried to greet her kindly and say that he got mixed up with our group, but she cut me off by screaming at the poor thing about how he’s “not supposed to run away.” I spoke up and tried to shoulder the blame, claiming that we had stepped between him and her as we walked by and he got pulled along with the crowd (which isn’t really what happened, but I was trying to divert her ire a little). But it took everything in my power to not scream right back at her and tell her 1) that he ended up separated from her while she was completely distracted and talking on the phone, 2) that while we teach our kids not to wander off, when they are that little, their safety is ultimately OUR responsibility, and 3) that as a special needs child, he obviously needs even more supervision, especially given his trusting and willingness to take a strangers hand and walk away with them. Not that I would have had a chance to say all that anyway, since she grabbed his hand from me (the poor thing was hanging on to me for dear life) and dragged him away, still yelling. People really suck sometimes.
Oh – and totally unrelated, but I have to share: When I went to meet up with the boy after the parade (he marched with the band), he was holding hands with a girl!!!! And I don’t care how much burghbaby hates multiple exclamation points – sometimes they are needed. Like when your baby boy is HOLDING HANDS WITH A GIRL!!!!!