With today bringing more lousy weather, we decided to take Miles to Monkey Joe’s in north Charlotte this evening to run off some energy and, hopefully, go to bed at a reasonable hour. Commanding his attention with a variety of games and inflatables, Monkey Joe’s kept Miles more than occupied for a couple hours.
While there were children of all ages darting about the complex, there is a designated space for children five and under. And this would be great, if not for the fact that this rule generally seems to go unenforced.
There were three types of parents at Monkey Joe’s: those who watch their kids like hawks and make sure they’re behaving safely and appropriately*, parents who intently watch their kids run roughshod over the premises and clearly don’t give a damn about the ensuing chaos, and parents who don’t so much let their kids play as “release” them into the facility and go about some other business**.
Miles is still a pretty tiny kid, and a large part of any experience he has consists of merely observing and exploring. Well more than once we had to contend with larger (i.e., too big to be in that particular bounce house) children plowing through him. One of them actually had the audacity to talk back to Jaclyn and say, “Big kids get to go first!” as she clambered over Miles to climb a slide.***
Misgivings about the parenting (or lack thereof) happening around us aside, Miles had a lot of fun. He was, of course, drawn to the larger slides and bounce houses for both their scale and the other, older children playing on them, so we had to run a fair amount of interference to keep him safe. Fortunately, the smaller slides were ultimately enough to hold his interest.
And yes, he was falling asleep in the car by the time we got home.