On Thursday I had the opportunity to pick up Beth early. I was leaving work at 2:30, thanks to a long day in court on Wednesday. Customarily, when I pick up Beth early it means that we are going to do something other than just go home. So when we got to the parking lot outside Beth’s school I asked the question, “what do you want to do now Beth?” “I want to go to the park daddy.” I had driven through rain to get to the school, and I hadn’t driven far, so I knew this idea would not work out. I explained to Beth why we could not go to a park, and asked Beth if there was something indoors that she would like to do. “Do we have to go indoors at home daddy?” I answered, “we only have to go indoors at home if we go home.” “Can we go indoors somewhere else?” “Yes”, I answered. Beth considered her options for about as long as it took her to inhale between sentences. “I want to go see your work daddy.” We were off to see my office. Before we were even half way there, the skies opened and the rain fell. Beth was distressed that another opportunity to wear her new raincoat would be missed (it was hanging safely in the coat closet at home). She was somewhat distracted by the opportunity to use daddy’s big umbrella. I have to offer some explanation here. Daddy’s umbrella is not really that big. It’s one of those collapsable, compact folding umbrellas that can fit in a backpack or briefcase. However, compared to Beth’s Barbie umbrella, I guess you could say it was big – all things being relative. Luckily for me, the rain slowed down just as we were pulling into the parking lot, so I didn’t get too wet walking at arm’s length from Beth as she happily bounced underneath daddy’s umbrella. Visions of umbrella parts making shish-ka-bob of bodily parts kept me a safe distance, if somewhat wet, from my overjoyed and adorable daughter. We went inside, made the rounds, and made a brief stop over in my office to get a lay of the land. On the way out, we stopped by my boss’ office, and it was here that Beth really let loose. My boss wanted to remind me of a couple things before I left, but Beth, being the assertive child that she is, interrupted by announcing, “o.k., you can talk but talk fast because it’s time for us to go!” For a fraction of a second I was mortified. Then my boss erupts in laughter. It turned out that a good time was had by all.