It was early summer, 2010. A typical day, I was sitting in my office. The sealing fan was pushing the humid air around. Then a crew cut blonde headed, blue eyed, little boy walked in. I knew he was trouble the moment I laid eyes on him. I pretended I didn't notice his presence.
"Grampa" he said, "can you help me catch a frog." I'd seen his type before. I'd been his type before. Again, I tried to focus on the work spread all over my desk.
"Grampa, can you pleeeessss help me catch a frog?"
I sighed. I could see that there was no way out.
Sure, I said. I can help you catch a frog. However, it is up to you to actually catch him.
"Great! Come this way!" He led me by the hand to the unfinished water feature in the center of our circle drive.
I could see that there were a couple of frogs lurking in the murky water. It didn't take long before he spotted them too. "There he is! Catch him for me Grampa!"
Some how, I knew he wanted me to do the catching.
The bright green amphibians were bobbing gently in the water, each had a red rimmed eye looking straight at us.
I advised that he get down on your knees, edge toward the water, then quickly grab him.
"Ooooo, frogs are slimy" he complained at the thought of actually grabbing a frog.
I tried to explain that if you want to catch a frog, you have to accept that there will be a little slime. He wasn't buying it.
After a short while of gently insisting that he do the frog catching, we eventually agreed that I could return to my office and back to my work.
A short while later, the same fuzzy blonde head and blue eyes quietly stole into my office. Again, I pretended not to notice. While my eyes were boring holes into my computer screen, he slowly worked his way to the opposite edge of my desk.
"Grampa?" he softly uttered. "I want a lizard. Did you ever have a lizard?"
Weighing my options, I raised my eyes and informed him that I had never owned a lizard. However, if he really wanted one, he could dig through the wood pile in the back yard. I had seen lizards out there in the past.
"Come with me!" he insisted. This time he led me to the back porch.
"What colors are the lizards in the wood pile?" I informed him that I had seen mostly greens and blues. "Do they have sparkles?!" he excitedly asked. I replied in the negative.
Insisting that I would wait on the back porch while he moved the logs, reluctantly, he slowly crossed the back yard to the log pile. Cautiously, he approached and kicked a few logs.
I advised that you can't catch a lizard with your feet. I recommended moving the logs with his hands and grabbing the lizards as they run away.
Slowly, he lifted a log. "Eeeeee!" he shrieked, "Grampa, I saw a blue lizard!" I urged him to grab it. "No way" was the reply.
After kicking over a few more logs, and near sighting of another possible lizard, we agreed to return indoors.
I remember having little trouble catching frogs as a child. Lizards were a bit more tricky. I guess "the great white hunter" my grandson aint.