Monday, May 19, 2008
5 kids, 24 hours.
So, I didn't go do the state time trial this weekend, opting instead to take my two boys, their two friends and my 6-year-old niece to a renaissance fair and then camping. I know, I know... your first thought is wouldn't pedaling as hard as you can for an hour in the wind up and down Norfolk's hills been easier?
Perhaps, but not near as entertaining or rejuvenating. I find when I'm feeling a little weary, nothing is quite as good a pick-me-up as getting a young person's view of the world. Case in point...
It turns out my niece, who has more pink than anyone I know and is a walking, talking embodiment of "girly," LOVES to fish.
"This is a full-size rod, let me help you with the cast."
"I know how to do this, Aunt Sydney," as she snatches the rod away, listens briefly to the instructions, and makes a perfect cast.
She did admit later, however, that in addition to catching fish, she sometimes catches people standing nearby. We all gave her a little extra clearance from then on, but she did great and caught two fish. One was too small to the keep, the next, too alive, I guess.
We were nearing the time to go and she still hadn't caught one. All the while, my youngest, Kyle, and his friend Andrew were catching something every 5 minutes. Disgusted, Anya vowed not to leave the lake until she caught one. At about 7 minutes to battle time (where I convince her to go despite her not meeting her goal) Fortune smiled upon us and she got one - a large, beautiful bluegill. She was thrilled and was carrying it and her pole back to the tent and talking about showing it to her mom.
Then I told her the boys were cleaning their fish at the lake and would help her. All the sudden she stopped and looked at that fish, a terrible sad expression took over her face and she said, "It's so sad to kill such a nice thing."
"Throw it back and let it get bigger and have babies, then you can catch it again sometime," I answered.
Her smile returned and we removed the hook, tossed the fish back in the water and returned to the campsite. I have to admit I was relieved. I'm a good one for doing what needs to be done, but when it comes to cleaning the catch, it's not my favorite thing.
The boys also had a good time. Erik and his friend Eric, climbed trees, made a fire and hunted frogs. Kyle and his buddy, Andrew, did a lot of fishing and all the boys played "hide and go shank," a game all about sneaking up behind each other in the dark and pretending to slice the throat. Boys. What are you going to do?
They all wanted to stay a longer and do it again, so we will, but next time, I'm bringing all three of my poles. I almost lost my serene attitude during the pole shortage bickerfest.