We went camping a few weekends ago, on what has become a biannual camping trip with the groomsmen gang from our wedding and their families. We always have a great time with each other, and each trip gets a little more thought and planning behind it. As we all age, and have less tolerance for discomfort, we have packed away the pup tents and prefer our gathering space to sport indoor plumbing and even air conditioning if so desired. This year we scored with an atypically pleasant August weekend, and a glorious day of boating around a reservoir on a double-decker boat.
We met in a nice cabin situated right in front of a pasture of grazing cattle, with little else around us. On our way there that Friday evening, as we turned off the interstate and began winding our way through tiny towns with names like Fruitdale and Bean Blossom, E modified her favorite (non-challenging) travel game “Hey! Let’s look for Hospitals and Hotels!” (as we pass a suburban exit with eight chain hotels in a row) to “Hey! Let’s look for Barns!” (as we pass two dozen every half mile). The thrill of the hunt wanes quickly, and pretty soon the landscape is a blur of barns and silos, with a few patches of trees in between. She’s still watching them though, and a moment later she tries again. “Hey! Let’s look for Barns with their doors open!”
Flash back a few months ago to a conversation we had over interesting sayings/slang for everyday occurrences. One such phrase we discussed was “hey…your barn door’s open” meaning, of course, your zipper is down. For some reason, this really delighted E, and she used it a few times in the correct context, which was slightly embarrassing since she was not also schooled in the tactful volume to employ when one points these things out to others.
So it was with the normal enthusiasm that she tries to inject into these really banal highway games, that she made the statement about open doors on barns. No sooner had it come out of her mouth, when lo and behold, there was a large, classic red barn with twin silos like castle turrets and an enormous thirty foot wide door standing wide open. As she chalked up a mental point for herself, she suddenly remembered. She paused for a brief second, and then she asked us “Hey guys! Remember that time we talked about what you say to someone who has a barn and that barn door is open??
“You say, hey, your zipper is down!“
E pilots the boat. The band-aids were from her booster shots the day before at her four-year-old checkup, not from an unfortunate sailing accident.