The Play Palace…

It’s that time of year when everything is being wrapped up at school; therefore everyone is in summer mode. There is always an end of year party or a treat for the kids, especially the younger ones, & these invariably end up at the same places year after year. Once again my younger son joined his classmates (from both grade 1 classes) for 2 hours of germ infested inflatable fun! That’s right people, the play palace is nothing like its name would have you believe. Not in the slightest.

To be fair to whoever had the idea, it’s a pretty cool use of space. What is normally an ice rink in the winter months is defrosted in spring & filled with giant slides, bouncy castles, plasma cars, basketball hoops & table tennis. I first discovered it the summer after child number 2 was born. At that time they had a toddler area & also had designated times when they only allowed children under 5 in. This was great for a mum like me, struggling with the beginnings of my disease, chasing around after a 2 year old, & juggling a 6 month-old baby. At that time I didn’t really consider what a cesspit of bacteria it was, I was so desperate to entertain my toddler to care really. I suppose at the end of the day it’s all about immunity – or at least that’s how I justify it now!

You discover very quickly that it doesn’t seem to matter how tired they are it is almost impossible to extract them from that place. After we arrive I placed a bet that it would only take 45 minutes for the first meltdown to occur… it was 49 minutes actually so I was pretty darn accurate. That is a sad sign that I have spent too much time in that place, which is probably why I hate it so much. Toward the end of our allotted time there were several parents around the arena trying to talk down their 7 year-olds. There was stomping, pet lips, & folded arms all accompanied with tears & wailing. I consider myself to be very lucky, my two got a 5 minutes warning then knew it was time to leave (somewhat reluctantly, but they didn’t put up much of a fight). In fact it was my husband whom I almost had to physically remove from the table tennis table, challenging another dad!

Needless to say it’s a great way for parents to also catch up. There are some people we either only see in passing, or not at all. However, I do hope next year they consider grade 2 kids to be too old for such shenanigans, I really need a change of venue & not run the risk of my kids missing the final days of school through illness!

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