There were times that having kids have made my life choices collide with a world with different expectations. My kids were now in wrestling.
My hubby was into kid’s wrestling, bringing them to practice and dragging the family to our first match. My daughter was pretty competitive, but I think it was mostly due to him offering to buy them a toy if they won a match.
My hubby asked me to bring them to a weekend tournament since he worked that weekend. He wasn’t sure where it was or any of the details. It’d be our second tournament and my first one bringing them alone. Heck, I was not even 100% sure of the location. The website said it was in the ‘new gym’ and it was 35 minutes away and weigh-in was 8:00AM.
This was going to be tight, but I managed to get up shower, get the kids dressed, get snacks, and brew copious amounts of ice tea to battle being up on a sleep-in day. We were on the road in time to make weigh in with some room to spare.
Thirty minutes later, we pulled into a teeny-tiny town with a single gas station. The directions brought me to a school building which housed all grades. I know because it said so on the outside. Trucks filled the lot. A herd of parents, with gym bags, and kids in tow headed toward a door on one side. That must be the place.
Once inside, A line of people filled the entry way leading to a set of tables with three woman taking money. The signs read $15 for a wrestler, 5 dollars for an adult admission and 1 dollar for a child admission.
Oh, oh. That was when it hit me. CASH.
The only place I used cash was for garage sales. I just don’t carry cash and it seemed silly to have a cash card/pin if I don’t use it. My checkbook was for vet bills and buying the cookie dough that the neighborhood kids sell to raise money for their school. The checkbook was located in a counter in the house for those occasions.
I checked my purse and I had ten bucks which wasn’t enough for even one kid to wrestle. The sea of strangers moved a step closer to the tables, cash in hands. There were no credit card machines or iPads or anything.
My mind whirled, what options did I have? The weight-in ended in twenty minutes. My bank was thirty minutes away and I didn’t know a soul around me.
The gas station. Maybe I could buy something and get cash back. I grabbed the kids and we headed to the car to drive to the gas station. When I asked about cash back, the kid behind the counter looked at me like I was nuts. He thought I meant the credit card rewards. So, no, the gas station wouldn’t give back cash with purchase.
So we drove home and I took them to breakfast (which does take a card) and talked with them about when you made mistakes you learn from them. What did mama learn? That she needed to have more cash on hand for wrestling.
The funny thing was when I related this to a friend, she thought I should’ve asked people or the organizers to spot me the money.
If I had known a single person or if it was in my school, I think I would’ve, but 30 minutes away and complete strangers, I just couldn’t do it.
Would you have asked to borrow money? Has the cash/card thing backed up on you?