The leaves are slowing shifting colour and the mercury’s rising – the promise of a glorious Indian summer fills the air. The streets are full of school children in shining backpacks, pressed jeans and new runners. Some walk shyly hand-in-hand with parents or grandparents. Some have younger siblings at their sides. Some run fill tilt towards the school yard hollering, eager to see old friends and hit the playground before the bell rings. Others walk slowly expressionless, already too cool for school. Still others drag their feet steeped in recent memories of sand and water, burnt marshmallows and block parties, reluctant to let go of summer’s grip.
My four-year-old looks longingly out at the kids as they stream into the schoolyard. He wants to go. He thinks he’s ready. But I’m happy to have him with me for another year. This final pre-school year, the last year of kids’ sizes at the Gap, easy afternoons at the pool, empty playgrounds, wide open spaces at Science World, tranquil beaches and slow mornings.
He may be tall but he’s still little inside. He asks for a “gugu” when he’s tired (milk in a sippy bottle), and his outrageous stories often need a translator. He love kids, but he crashes and burns out like a spectacular meteor from the excitement.
The schoolyard is empty now, and I think how precious this upcoming year is. Early childhood is fleeting; I’m already nostalgic. … gentle sigh.
This is my 9th post for the September – 21 Moments Writing Challenge – 12 more to go.