Monday, July 18, 2005

Your 2006 Summer Vacation Plans

Allie and I went for a walk last night. Despite the 92 – 96 degree temperatures we walked, hand-in-hand, around the neighborhood. We decided to walk through the woods. Allie calls it a forest. She says it sounds better. I agree.

In the thick of the forest we were attacked by mosquitoes and other insects. Allie wasn’t as freaked as I anticipated. I think she’s getting better about not losing it whenever a bug comes near her. However, she did perform quite the screaming jig when a bumble bee buzzed her legs. I can’t say that I blame her.

We encountered a couple of our neighbors during our walk. “We’re going for a walk,” Allie said. “We’re enjoying the beautiful evening,” she added. The neighbors smiled at the cute girl and her sweaty father because it was a beautiful evening. What they probably weren’t thinking, as the chatty little girl in the floral skirt walked by, was how fleeting the moment was. That’s what I was thinking. After all, how many more nights like this would I have with my daughter? It won’t be long before there will be little or no allure in something as mundane as taking a stroll with her father. But for now, our walk seemed to be one of the highlights of Allie’s day. It certainly was the highlight of mine.

I tried to soak it in. I tried to etch it into my brain. I know I’ll need memories like this to help close the tiny wounds that will accumulate as my girls struggle to become something much more than their father’s daughters.

Hold on. I’m not as maudlin as I make out. We had an entire weekend filled with great memories. We spent a lot of the time in Water Park Town (as Allie refers to the Wisconsin Dells). Allie and I had fun shooting down the water slides while Debbie hung back with Julia near the kiddy pools. Fortunately, none of us were completely consigned to kiddy pool duty. Claudette, Pam and Jeff were there too and we all took turns hanging with the shorty so that everyone had the opportunity to experience some of the more thrilling attractions.

The Black Anaconda rocks, by the way. Just ask Debbie.

I can’t speak for the group, but I had fun. Deb’s sisters and Jeff crave fun and seek adventure. I’m not saying that the wave pool at Noah’s Ark is the height of adventure, but at least these people are game for it. Their willingness to brave high temps, long lines and occasionally cranky toddlers made for a nice weekend away. I loved floating down the lazy river. All seven of us hooked together drifting in the cool water beneath the hot sun occasionally giggling at or splashing one another.

Of course it wasn’t all peaches and Jell-O. Fortunately cranky kids, minor inconveniences and a bee sting all seem to fade while evening strolls along Broadway, warm conversations, roller coasters, saltwater taffy and lumberjack breakfasts take precedence in our memories.

Next time we want you to be there with us.

No comments: