Saturday, February 13, 2010

Fairy Hunting & Clasps

We're down to five projects on the needles, because I finally finished a new coffee cozy for myself, since the one I've been using was the first one I ever made and I've improved a bit since then. I made it a button-closure this time, which is new, and bought some antique-looking silver clasps for it. Lovely.

Today was a good Saturday, in that I felt no obligation to do much of anything most of the day. I like Saturdays like that. It's not a Saturday unless you can spend at least part of it relaxing, am I right?

But I say "most of" and "part of" because I did have an obligation this morning. I once again found myself at the home of Choo Choo, the five-year-old neighbor that I babysit occasionally.

This particular Saturday was a bit different, as Choo Choo did not seem interested in doing much of anything, today. And by that I mean he seemed to want to do everything, but couldn't settle on something in particular. We started about five movies, played with six different sets of toys, and nothing seemed interesting.

So, in the end, we decided to go outside for a walk. For him, a walk technically means that his mother walks and he rides along beside on his bike. Unfortunately his bike helmet was in his mom's car...and the car was with his mom, which is to say elsewhere. I made it clear to him that he was not riding a bike without his helmet, and after a brief resistance he soon saw things my way.

Next he grabbed his t-ball bat, ball, and glove and we spent the next three minutes playing catch. But neither he nor I possess the coordination to do much in the way of baseball (maybe someday, but not currently) so that idea was scratched as well.

After putting away the t-ball gear, I posed that we should go down to the creek.

Let me explain. Choo Choo's front yard has a large dip right below the street where a very small creek (read: one and a half feet wide) runs from the neighbor's house down to a culvert and then disappears under a solid bridge over to MY yard. But we haven't seen our side of the creek in years, due to an overabundane of ivy, blackberry bushes, and morning glory.

So we put on our rubber boots and went down to the creek. As we walked along the muddy bank I spotted a little spot on the opposite side where my grandmother would have said Teenie Weenies (fairies, pretty much) would have lived. Teenie Weenies were very small and lived in those tiny places along creeks and such, and as a child I loved looking for those places.

I told this to Choo Choo, and I didn't think he had heard me nor cared until we were exploring along the bank and he suddenly said, "Look! That's a Teenie Weenie hotel! And over there, a Teenie Weenie buffet. And a HUGE apartment complex!"

We spent an hour like this, hiking around in the mud in the rain by a little creek, dreaming about fairies and how they must take little boats to work and what they must eat, and how those little tiny plants that grow along the banks of creeks must be Teenie Weenie lettuces. In all, the finest afternoon I've had in a long while. I was sorry to see it end.

Sometimes I think little fibs aren't so bad, you know? We've become so obsessed with KNOWING, with not having the wool pulled over our eyes, that we don't like to recognize little magical things like Teenie Weenie hiding spots. Honestly, I don't mind that I'm responsible for my neighbor believing in fairies. Someday he'll "know better" and decide what to believe in, but for now? He's having fun, and he's using his imagination, and I'm not so obsessed with "truth" that I'm going to spoil that. There's more to life than practicality and wisdom without wonder and delight.

So there.

Go put on your rubber boots and go hunting for fairies in the rain by a creek. You won't be disappointed.

-The GLS

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