Billie’s school has decorative tile that spreads across the entire campus in opaque lines of blue and yellow. Where there are no decorations, the tile is replaced with the obligatory champagne tile that was all the rage in the early 90’s.

Regardless of the tile’s origins, Billie has decided that all the “white” tile is infested with alligators.

This makes our morning walk through campus quite entertaining. While all the other parents shuffle their students in lethargic, herd-like fashion, I weave in and out of the crowd trying to follow my monster as she screams excitedly and narrowly avoids certain death by imaginary alligators.

This morning Billie almost collided head first with a little boy walking with his father, still sleepy and fully unaware of his egregious error of not sharing the blue tile. Billie smacked head first into him, expertly rolled off his shoulder, tip toed around him, and continued on her quest of not getting eaten while simultaneously screaming, “WE NEVER KNOW WHERE THEY ARE! THE ALLIGATORS! THEY COULD BE ANNNNYWHERE.”

I look at the father apologetically. “I’m so sorry,” I say, “the white tile is infested with alligators.”

“Oh,” his eyes widen with empathetic understanding, “I totally get it.” He smiles and looks down at his son who is now asking him about the alligators.
“Yup,” he responds genuinely, “you heard her, there are alligators in the white tile. You’d better run!”

His son paused a moment, looked at me, looked at his father, then ran after Billie screaming, “Ah!! Wait for meeee!!”

The father laughed with his whole belly before looking at me and saying, “This’ll get him to class faster. Good trick. Thank you.”

Ha. Anything we can do to help, buddy.


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