"Mom! I found a bug! It's dead (squish), see?"
My mother, knowing what was coming next but not wanting to alarm the other parents would nod and give me the eyeball treatment where she'd wiggle her orbs in a desperate attempt to talk me out of creeping out the other children, while she smiled.
"That's great, Stacey. Why don't we go on the slide?"
"Pfffff." I would run off, looking for the right sandy soil to give it a proper burial. "Mom! Get me a stick! I can dig a hole right here next to this dog poo!" My mother, looking properly mortified would move me away from the offensive spot and distract me into the sandbox.
"Let's make a sand castle. See? Take the bucket, fill it with sand and.... Stacey, get the bug out of the castle."
"But Mom, I can just dig it out later. Then we can take it home and I'll bury it there."
"Let me see what other toys we can find, stay right there." The poor woman crossed the park to our car to check the trunk. I could see her arms flapping and her mouth moving as she practiced what to say to the psychiatrist when they finally drug me in for treatment. By the time she'd returned, she found me happily patting sand inside a plastic bucket.
"Look, Stace, I found a shovel and a... what's that poking out of the bucket?"
"It's a head." Barbie's face didn't betray the indignity of being buried with bug bits up to her neck in sand. Her blonde locks streamed out beside her in a pinwheel of tangles as I carefully combed them clear with my fingers.
"I think it's time to go home," she said with a sigh. With a nod to the mommies that had inched away from us, we gathered up our toys and headed for the car while she mentally mapped another park for future use. We were running out of sand.