The overwhelming amount of photos and videos on my phone have long been dragging down my phone’s performance so I recently began moving some of them onto the cloud to free up some space. This will come as a surprise to absolutely no one, but an inordinate number of them involve the Naval Academy.
At first, I tried to resist the urge to reminisce, but then I thought, “what’s the use in keeping these photos if you don’t think about the memories they represent.” So I indulged. The waves of memories covered me like a warm blanket and I could recall so many moments vividly.
But there was a picture from Plebe Year of two of my son’s companymates that made me laugh out loud, and it had nothing to do with the circumstances represented in the photo.
The memory is from Youngster Year after my son posted on Snapchat about a long wait at Brigade Medical. I managed to get a hold of him to ask him what happened and he vented to me about a 3-hour wait to get some ibuprofen. I asked if he wanted me to send him some so he wouldn’t have to wait next time and he said yes. If you know me, you know that I couldn’t resist an excuse to send a package.
So I went to my favorite store – Dollar Tree – and picked up about four bottles. I don’t know why, other than I figured it would cover him through the year with some to spare with his friends so they wouldn’t have to wait, either. As I was strolling the aisles after scooping up the main target, I found myself near the mailing supplies and saw a postal tube. Huh. It was the perfect size for the bottles of ibuprofen. In fact, I discovered I could fit eight bottles in almost perfectly. So eight it was.
There was no logic behind it, really, just an impulse. So I packaged it up and took it to the post office. The guy behind the counter eyed it warily.
“What’s in this?” he asked.
“Just a couple of bottles of ibuprofen,” I replied.
He shook it and it rattled like a maraca, causing him to chuckle.
“Looks and sounds like a pipe bomb,” he said.
Now, at this point, I’m sure I should have panicked, worried that I would cause my son some sort of unwanted attention. For whatever reason, I didn’t. I just smiled, thanked the man, and went on my way.
Now a few days later, I asked my son if the package had arrived and he, rather curtly, affirmed that it had and had attracted the attention of pretty much everybody in the post office and his company. Turns out it did, in fact, make people think it was a pipe bomb. Maybe I should have apologized, but I literally laughed out loud.
Then I reached out to the two companymates in the aforementioned photo asking if they had received something I sent them as well. They said they did and I told them they should ask my son about the ibuprofen. They said he had already told them and, of course, they found it hilarious, too.
All part of the roller coaster ride, I suppose. As parents, we’re counted on to be supportive and caring, but hey, even a guardian angel needs a laugh now and then.