Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Night Walk

The weather's been beautiful 'round here of late, and it's awakened my need to be out there, mixing it up with nature, basking in the glow of a moonrise.  You know, Outward Bound shit. Except for only 20 minutes, and in my neighborhood, and with several ounces of bug spray.


Tonight I invited the Girl to take a night walk with me. She happily accepted, and slipped on her pink kitten rain boots. We walked up the hill , hand in hand, and she scooped up every dandelion that had gone to seed along the way.  She calls them "wishing flowers," because that's what you do with them. You blow the seeds off of the stem, and make a wish.

Her repeated wish?

That her good friend -- one of my best friend's daughters -- would marry the Boy. She realized a long time ago that if the Boy married this particular little girl, then they would be sisters. Once that little factoid manifested, she was cool with their nuptials.

As we summited the hill, the streetlamps came on, and I announced that it was time to go back down the hill to our house.  The girl turned to me, cheeks flushed, blond pigtails floating in the breeze, and asked, "Can I run home?"

"Yup," I answered. 

And off she ran, hair bouncing and streaming behind her like a contrail from a rocket.  She veered around a curve, disappearing from my sight.  I got a little nervous, but this is what raising kids is, right?  You try and game the scenario a little, so that they aren't in frightening situations.  But you let them go, knowing that you taught them to look before they cross the street.

When I laid eyes on her again, she was feigning sleep in our front yard, curled up against the decorative mini-boulder that hides a pipe. She does this when she wants to be carried up to bed, so I obliged. After slipping her in her pajamas, I tucked her in, kissed her on the cheek, and said good night.

And then she demanded snacks, two stories, four cuddles, and a lullaby.  And I thought the walk would tucker her out.

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