Sunday, November 8, 2009

Lingering memories of summer

Today was one of those rare New England November days when the Sun shone brightly, the temperature climbed into the 60s, the air felt soft and welcoming.

Since it also was our day to care for Devon, our 2-year-old granddaughter, we followed our outdoor routine: Walk Murphy, our golden, on the conservation land trail; stop by Wilson Farms to see the farm animals and shop for produce, and, in the afternoon, head to the playground. We finished the day with a flourish and sore backs -- filling another 30 bags with leaves after Devon dove in up to her neck in the pile beneath the big Maple.

You could say Devon was a surprise when she came along. What we're finding though is that
grandparenting has all the joy and none of the edge of parenting. The worries are gone. The pressure to discipline has evaporated. The drive to help your kids excel is muted. Only the moment matters.

With Devon, there are many such moments. She's a character. The other day she accompanied her mom to buy a new brassiere at the mall. Before mom could open her mouth, Devon walked up to the sales clerk and announced, "I want to get some boobs."

Today, sitting in her car seat on the way to the conservation land, she announced.

"I've got on pucker paint," Kathy's phrase for lipstick.

"What kind?" I asked.

"Grape." And then, after a pause, "I love pucker paint."

I laughed loudly, apparently embarrassing her. "Go away Ada," Devon said (she always calls me Ada or da, he names, never grandpa).

Later, as we pulled into the parking lot at Wilson Farm, to see the animals, Devon said something we couldn't quite make out.

"The pig is pretty?" Kathy asked.

"No way," came her voice from the back seat.

It turns out that she was saying the (coy) fish are pretty. As for the pig, maybe Devon could share some of that grape pucker paint next time we go.

On the other hand, you can put lipstick on a pig and .... oh, never mind.

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