Yesterday wrapped up February school vacation. We're not skiiers or island hoppers (skiing looks fun, but it's the island hopping I could really envy), so we generally stick around. This week's been warm enough to go on a couple of really great walks. Watching my lovely girls "discover" a shallow pool along a trail through the woods of our town's little nature center took me back about four decades.
For a couple years when I was really little, our family lived in a college town just outside Boston. The college campus had a little pond. One fall day my mother packed a picnic and we sat on the grass by the pond and had lunch, then played around for a while. I couldn't have been more than 6. I distinctly remember the sensations of that day; the "ploop" sound of little stones tossed into the water, the endless circles of ripples they made, rough twigs in my hand and the sounds they made flicking mud and water around, cool damp moss at the pond's edge, brightly colored leaves floating about. I remember it as a Huge Adventure.
I want my girls to have so many memories like this that they don't seem unique. I hope each of my daughters will walk in the woods as an adult and feel that it's a familiar thing, a thing she grew up doing with her mother and her sister who love her beyond measure, so that whenever she does it it's a comfort on some very basic level. Assuming we can continue to avoid both poison ivy and Lyme Disease, we appear to be on track for these happy woodsy memories to be so plentiful they blur together.
Yesterday afternoon they came across this mushy puddly place in the woods and pretended it was Degoba and they were Yoda and Luke Skywalker. That's a memory I might single out, even if they don't.