Just before I quit my job back in October I got an email from my good friend Geoff, who has a 5-year-old goofball son named, Otto.
Geoff told me he and his wife, Jenny, were in a bind. They needed someone to pick their kiddo up from school once or twice a week, hang out with him for an hour, and drop him off to one of his parents. Geoff was very sweet and told me he realized this might not be how I wanted to spend my time now that I wasn’t working at a desk job, but that if the commitment was of any interest to me, they could really use my help because they were having trouble finding someone.
Little did Geoff know, I love kids so I jumped at the chance. A little extra cash + play time with a munchkin? YES. I was so down for that and flattered that he trusted me.
I’ve spent the last seven months hanging out with little Otto a couple times a week. We go to the park, we go to the bookstore, we get ice cream, sometimes we get french fries or pizza. (Shh! Don’t tell the parents.) He loves Artichoke Pizza, which means he’s one bad ass New Yorker.
Basically, we have a great ol’ time together. He has a lot to say about life, and I love to listen.
Next week will be my last week with the little guy! Geoff’s schedule is changing and he will be able to pick his kid up from school every day – a delightful revolution in the world of a Dad, I’m imagining.
I will miss Otto, but I hope to get to see him from time to time. If only so he can play my “phone game.” He’s obsessed with Brickbreaker on my Blackberry. “I don’t know why I’m so curious about that phone game! I just love it!”
Yesterday he said out of the blue, “I know why you’re sad.”
And I said, “Am I sad?”
He said, “Yeah my mom told me we’re over soon.”
“Oh yeah,” I said, “I am really sad about that.”
Then he got distracted. “Hey! My name is on that building!”
And just like that, our sentimental moment was over. 5 is a fantastic age.