Tuesday, May 12, 2015

'Easy Come, Hard Go'

The kids and I were making our way down Main Street when a balloon floated across the sidewalk in front of us.

It must have seemed like a minor miracle to them: The balloon had enough helium to float, but not enough to climb more than about 5 feet above the ground. It was just wandering around Roosevelt Island like a bumblebee.

The chased it down and began fighting over it. Finally, it was agreed that Alice would hold the balloon until we reached the playground. Then Elliot would get a turn with it.

Unfortunately, when we got the playground, Alice let go of the string.

It didn't float into the sky, but it managed to drift up and over enough to settle inside a construction area. The balloon found its new equilibrium within the high walls of the building site — there was no way to get it back.

When Elliot realized he would never get his turn with the balloon, he began bawling. I tried to console him with the old aphorism, "Easy come, easy go."

"No," he wailed. "Easy come, hard go."

Now that I think about it, his version applies to real life a lot more frequently.