When Bob was 2, we lived on the west side in a funky rental house that had many issues. Our landlord was not exactly a hands-on type, so she hired a construction company to take care of a few of the larger problems we had listed for her but she was too cheap to put us up somewhere else during the work.
The construction company sent us Pedro, a young carpenter who whistled ranchero music while he worked. Pedro came and went intermittently over the course of a few months, painting baseboards, laying new thresholds, and cutting doors to fit their frames.
A few weeks into the process, there was a three-day project that involved building a new sub-floor in our only bathroom, in order to lay a new tiled floor over it. On those mornings, Pedro would remove the toilet and set it in the hall, and then re-install it back in the bathroom at the end of the day. For me, this resulted in a lot of quick drives, young Bob in tow, to the park down the street to use the public rest room.
One of these mornings, I woke up with a stomachache. I tried to relax the rumblings with a few swigs of Pepto Bismol. After Bob got up from his morning nap, it became apparent that we were going to have to make a quick trip to the park. My stomach situation was starting to feel desperate. We had to get out of there, now.
I dressed toddler-Bob and as I packed up the diaper bag, I broke into a sweat. It quickly dawned on me that I was not going to make it to the car, much less the park. I could hear Pedro and the tile guy on the other side of the wall, moving the cabinets. Whatever was about to happen, it was going to have to happen in Bob's room. It was time to get creative.
I scanned the room; rocking chair, chest of drawers, hamper. Bob sat on the floor, playing with a toy tractor. My gaze landed on the Diaper Genie, a tall, slim plastic trash-can type apparatus with a lid, designed to hold dirty diapers without releasing the dirty diaper scent into the room. I had my answer.
"Mama! No pants!"
Bob had noticed my oddly balanced stance over the Genie. I could hear Pedro and the tile guy in the hallway, just outside. Bob drove his tractor towards the door.
"I show Pedro tractor!"
"No, Bob! Don't touch the door," I hissed.
"Pedro!" Bob reached up, his little hand turned the door knob.
"Oh, God. No, Bob!" I sat frozen. Bob pulled opened the door. The hall was empty. I could hear Pedro and the tile guy out in the living room. Pedro yelled, "Be back in ten, Miss Lisa," as he walked out, shutting the front door behind him.
We spent the rest of the day at the park.