It’s toddler hour at the trampoline park, and this place is jumping. The hordes of small, very limber, and slightly intimidating people in rompers and athletic shorts bouncing on an endless grid of trampolines are proof of that. Even though I’m in my fourth decade of life, donning linen capris and a very large purse, I feel I couldn’t be more ready to rumble.
I’m here with my four-year-old and my desire to bond while burning mad calories in wall-to-wall aerial action. I am ready to experience the wow. At least, I think I am.
Although, I could just stand here and watch, too. I could finally ask Google if cricket protein powder really doesn’t have a strong buggy flavor or if white jeans are on their way out (fingers crossed). And my Jason’s Deli sandwich hasn’t had a chance to fully digest yet…
Nah, I’m going to jump. The nice ticket seller assured me high-flying fun isn’t just for kids.
Here goes nothing. Okay! Oh-kaay. This hurts a little. The spring-bound polypropylene surface feels more solid upon impact than I expected. I’ve never wondered whether my brain can shake loose and slam repeatedly into the underside of my skull. The answer, by the way, is yes. It feels like it definitely can. They might consider adding that to their liability waiver.
Oh, they’d like to see my best Tarzan with the rope swing, the sign says. I’d like to show them, but I do wonder if it’s advisable given that I am not Tarzan. Nor am I a person with skeletal elasticity or stores of youth. Will I be the first to hit the wall, flop into the foam pit, and lie motionless and moaning for an hour, or does it happen all the time?
I meant to remain in my zone, per policy of one jumper per square, but it turns out I have less control of my airborne, ailing body than I imagined I would. Thankfully, the small child throwing popcorn in my face with whom I collided mid-air is fine. When I landed astride the padded barrier, the ill-conceived (but very well-marketed) notion that a trampoline park would make me both a fun and a fit mom shattered. So did my left collarbone.
Unfortunately, I’ve just now tweaked something in my lower back. As I lay prostrate, I hold out hope no one lands on my splayed-out, very old, and very tired body. I believe I need medical attention. If I call out, will one of the 16-year-old Court Monitors be able to lift me?
My mind is drifting, my head and hips bobbing arrhythmically against this trampoline. I have no idea where my child is, but I don’t think this qualifies as bonding. Definitely not burning any calories except those expended through humiliation and regret over a thwarted attempt to experience weightlessness at the behest of a giant springboard to Hell.
I think I’m going to request a refund for the 50-minute Adult Ticket to Fly. My body hurts very badly and I’ve split the crotch of my Ann Taylor capris.