I am very much in touch with my inner child. The “kid” inside loves mystery, loves playing outside, loves activity, adventure and all that stuff I used to be a part of when I was ten. I think that’s why I love playing with kids when I get a chance. I love it when I see them really having fun, being inventive and using their imagination. I especially enjoy when they are old enough to talk about what’s on their mind.
This last week children were visiting next door and I got to play. They were trying their hardest to enjoy the snow but they needed a sled and I had noticed one in the attic. I knew they liked animals so I introduced them to Scruffy the dog and had them join us on a walk. And on their last day to play we walked through the deep snow to see the hidden fort in the brush pile out in the wetlands. We sat inside on the carpet of dried grass and rushes and marveled at the construction, how “cool” it was. Kids love forts.
However, most kids also love playing with fire at some point in their growing up years. And it was this thought that had been bothering my brother since last fall. Knowing that quite a few people, many still school age children, were aware of the fort and its “coolness” he was always imagining the horror it would be to have the fort go up in flames with someone in it. The wood was tinder dry and the winter air had made it even more ready to burn quickly. He decided it was time to return to his original plan of burning the brush pile.
Around suppertime, I went out to say goodbye. I took pictures, crawled inside the fort and sat for a while. I took the small tin that had been left there as a souvenir. There was a little war going on in me – the inner child was having a small tantrum.
Later, with my brother and his wife, I watched the flames eat the brush pile nearly flat. It was a glorious fire, hot and fast. One match to the inside of the fort made quick work of the bed of dried grass and I could understand the wisdom of getting rid of a fire hazard. It was a pretty sweet fort and it was fun just knowing it was there, while it lasted. But it was time. My adult self was glad that potential danger was going to be averted. As an adult I’ve learned to ignore tantrums, even my own.
I’m saving this little tin as inspiration. This is a rather large property with a lot of interesting wooded areas and I’m already getting ideas on where the next fort should be. Long live the inner child. Just sayin’…