I was with a group of friends the other night when one woman began talking about some unwelcome guests she’d had the weekend before. The guests had an 18-month old child, and yet they forgot to bring a stroller. Well, they didn’t actually “forget” the stroller, the woman said. They opted not to bring it. They only had so much room in their car, and they wanted to bring several of the child’s toys, so when they ran out of space, they decided they’d rather just carry the child all weekend than forgo the stuff they’d already packed.
“Were they older parents?” another woman asked.
“Yes, they were,” the first woman said.
I tried to imagine what the parents’ age would have to do with such a decision. Older parents are shortsighted? Older parents make bad decisions? Older parents don’t realize how heavy a child can be after carrying them all weekend? (younger parents would clearly know this calculation).
It all worked out in the end, the first woman said, because they wound up borrowing a stroller — no doubt from a young couple on their way to the beach who had to choose between carrying their surfboards or pushing a stroller, and they opted for the surfboards. At least older parents would have removed their child from the stroller before handing it off.