I love my auntie's duties. Like squishing my nephews' cheeks whenever I feel the need of doing so or making funny faces for hilariously long my face creams are horrified with. I'm fun to scrap knees with kind of aunt and will not let go of this title. I can make a toddler let a really laud belly laugh out and teach him how to roll his tongue to create a tube. Very important skill when you're four, I tell you. I will fail on purpose and pretend I don't know how two-wheel scooter works. Anything that is more than significant in busy lives of making memories through facing every day challenges. Climbing sidewalks and staying atop is one of them.
This time the mountain was higher than expected, the views satisfying enough, add people I'm more than happy to roll down the Hengistbury Head hill with when needed and bank holiday Monday could be engraved on my tombstone. It was that good. Plus the wind in exchange of rain made it work in terms of entertainment. Sometimes no object than a plain ribbon of road is all that promises time well spent. The things you want to see quicker than the others therefore you run ahead in excitement is what provides the biggest fun. Once you've seen it, you run back and the fun persists if not grows twice your shoe size. Then there are those abandoned rocks and sticks one can use as swords or cellphones to get through to more civilized areas. There's nothing to stop kids from believing it was made for them, left at arm's reach and ready to bring home if only pockets were made big enough for growing collections. And we take every rock, grain of sand very seriously.
I am a firm believer that what we really need at any given time can be found within a mile radius from us. Or just plain straight ahead and right behind if we only look curiously enough to invite it in. Equally I'd let kids roam free without distracting them with toys as they know better the pressures from getting a hold of some to attract the obvious and annoying mantra - you insisted on bringing it with us so you ride it/kick it/carry it till the world ends.
The walk back to the car was interesting too. Some of us had enough energy to make it, some thought heading the same way twice seemed a little too eccentric. And at the greater speed? Hilarious. So Damian and his brother headed to the car first to be there and ready for the parking officer and I volunteered for a snail speed walk with Nadia and her older cousin asking me to pick him up at least every two breaths in. I wasn't ready for such workout so we walked not paying attention to speed and the long way ahead, we used each bench dotted along the uninviting path to finally reach our destination. We made it without being picked up therefore the sticks and rocks made it with us. Teamwork, you know. Even if it meant asking who could take the wider step. Forward, that is.