Hitting the Bull’s Eye

22 09 2009

I like boys.

True, they’re always shoving each other or throwing things, but that’s one of the reasons I like them. Which is also why I love volunteering at Cub Scout Day Camp.

(Some of you might be wondering if that’s sarcastic or not. I am the first to admit that my writing occasionally dips into the satirical range, but you can generally tell when this happens by the tone of the piece and extra italics. “I love volunteering at Cub Scout Day Camp” is sarcastic. Without the italics [as in the above paragraph], you can rest assured I honestly love those little Cub Scouts.)

I was able to go with Zack and his troop a couple of months ago. Apparently, some cool mom the day before had participated in the archery portion because Zack excitedly told me about it all day long. When we reached the range, the boys were reminded of some important rules (including the ‘zombie walk’) and then were allowed to shoot with the bows.

After everyone had had a turn, Zack came over to where I was sitting and said, “Come on, Mom. You’ve got to try this.”

He didn’t have to urge too hard; it looked like a lot of fun.

Following protocol, I stood at the rope and said, “Rangemaster, may I please enter the range?”

“Yes, you may,” he said, and pulled aside the string so I could get by.

I’d been watching the boys for fifteen or twenty minutes and listening to the rangemaster give them instructions and tips all the while. I felt fairly confident I wouldn’t make a fool of myself.

How does that old saying go again? Oh, yes–pride cometh before the fall.

My feet were lined up right; my elbow was level; my arrow was nocked correctly. Everything seemed to be going according to plan. I closed my right eye and put the bull’s eye in my sights . . .

dink

Wha–?

My arrow kind of tangled up somehow in my bow and my bowstring. It just sort of fell to the cone at my feet.

It was really hard to stop laughing.

The boys (who haven’t yet learned to laugh at themselves) looked on, the pity on their faces seemingly saying, “How embarrassing. I’m sure glad I didn’t do that. Or, even worse, my mom.”

Zack shouted encouragement from the sidelines, while the rangemaster gave me a few tips in proper release.

I listened.

Hard.

Again, I nocked my arrow. Lined up my feet. Lifted my elbow. Sighted my target. Took a deep breath . . .

szz–Thwonk!

Bull’s eye.

That’s right.

Bull’s eye!

I let out what could only be described as a war whoop and raised both arms in the air.

What a rush.

(The boys looked even more embarrassed at this. Are moms not supposed to act that way? Maybe the mom who did it the day before simply shrugged one shoulder and acted nonchalant, as though she does it every day. Hmm. I’ll work on that for next year.)

My next couple of arrows missed the bull’s eye, but they hit the target. Really, I couldn’t ask for anything more. (Except for maybe a Toyota . . .)

The rangemaster gave me a bead to wear on my name tag.

I wore it with pride.

 

 

 

P.S. Does anyone know where I can get a simple bow and a couple of bales of straw? If I end up volunteering on the same day as Archery Mom next year, I want to be ready.