Mom had to work last night (I use the term Mom here in the context that when you have children, there comes a day when you discover you are referring to your wife as Mom, and your Mom as Grandma), so after school my eldest helped pack a snack and dress the three-year-old, and we headed out for a walk. Skies were gray, temps were cool with some wind, and we had to wade through some remaining banks of grainy snow, but I gotta say I was happily surprised by the demeanor of my fellow hikers, which was sunny throughout.
As flattened, brown, and generally stomped as the landscape is at this stage, when you walk it, there’s also a great sense of rediscovery, and it was heartening to see my children reflect that. Much chattering, tree-climbing, pointing to this that or the other thing emerging from the snow or draped in flattened weeds, and of course – all children seem to have this chip – the greatest happiness reserved for water where there usually isn’t water. We have a small pond out back, and it was something to see last night, larger than it’s ever been. The oldest enjoyed toeing ice floes out into the open water. There were also many streams and rivulets gurgling along where later this summer will only be a faint grassy furrow.
We saw a perfectly preserved bear track (cast in dried mud), a deer (that’s like seeing a squirrel, frankly), and enjoyed a snack while sitting on a stump overlooking the valley. Back in the yard we were greeted by a sweeping clutter of chickens, and supper never tasted so good.
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