On our first full day in sunny California, my sister and I set off for the local water park. We met her friend J and as the boys and J's children toured the slides, we sat in the wave pool and relaxed. As the afternoon wore on, the kids persuaded us to try our hand at a water slide. So we waited in line, hauled a giant inner tube up the hill, and rode down the slide screaming. Just as one does at a water park.
And that was so much fun, that I tried my hand at another slide. This one was aptly nicknamed "the toilet." After a quick ride down a darkened tube, the slide shot me into a spinning bowl and then dropped me into a deep pool. More fun.
After my success at the fancy slides, it seemed fitting to try my hand at one of the basic mat slides. I grabbed a mat and headed down the slide. As I started down, it occurred to me that the mat wasn't as well situated underneath me as I might like. But, no matter, I figured. It would be fine.
Two turns later, the slippery mat and I parted company. Within seconds, my speedy downward slide was halted. By which I mean completely halted. I wasn't moving. And so for the last third of the slide, I tried to hold on to my flip-slops, and re-position the mat underneath me, all the while creeping slowly downward, aware that there were other, more competent sliders, still on their mats, hurtling down the slide behind me. Not to mention the people at the bottom of the slide watching those of us coming down, witnesses to my complete incompetence.
In my case, there were three people waiting for me: Auntie KO, her son C and JT. They came into view as I slowly struggled downward and I looked up to see their caring faces. Those faces were suffused with laughter as my family bent over and busted a gut laughing at my bungling progress down the slide. Thus reassured of their abiding affection for me, I continued my creeping slide downward, by now resigned to slipping slowly into the drink, to be followed by my mat and the many people whose own slide I had stymied.