Monday, May 19, 2008


"Do you want to go to the park and count drinking fountains, Mom?" Rojo asks twice a day.

And twice a day we drive to the park, the one that sprawls at least a mile long, and many football fields deep. We walk the ground together, and count the drinking fountains. We've found six. Rojo is convinced there are seven, and if we just look hard enough, we'll find that last one.

His almost twelve-year-old hand in mine, almost as big. Where once he reached up and I reached down, we are all lined up now. Nearly shoulder-to-shoulder, eye-to-eye, as we walk, hand in hand.

Is it habit, I wonder, that has him reaching for my hand, holding it awkwardly, still not sure how one fits within another in a comfortable way?

It is affection, perhaps?

Is it the need to steady his awkward gait on the uneven grass?

Is it purely spontaneous, no thought whatsoever, just the purity of a child responding out of love without ego?

I hold his hand and listen to him talk about the fountains.

"There is one hiding in the trees, Mom," he says.

"One by the tennis courts."

"One by the baseball field."

"One is on the other side of a fence, but Daddy lifts me over and I get a drink. You don't have to lift me over, but we need to go see it, anyway. That is number four."

"Number five is by the bathrooms."

"Number six is by the white pick-up truck that works here."

"I know there is a number seven, though," he says every time.

He's probably right. One thing I know for sure, is when we find it, we'll be together, holding hands.


shauna said...

What a beautiful post. And what beautiful memories of your walks you'll both share.

Drama Mama said...

Scrumptuous. Both of you.

Jenny said...

Love your blog, Carrie.

Anonymous said...

Loving much. What special moments for you both.

Retiredandcrazy said...

My granddaughter and I spent a rainy Sunday afternoon trying to count (from memory) the number of places to eat in our small market town. We got to over 100 before we gave up.

La La said...

What was that Amber said about "killing us with cute"?

How thoughtful of him to say you didn't have to lift him over the fence! What a little gentleman!

Seriously, the story of you two is lovely and pure!!!

Amber said...

"Is it purely spontaneous, no thought whatsoever, just the purity of a child responding out of love without ego?"---

Yes. That one.

...this made me a little weepy, because my own sons hand is getting so big, and he is getting so tall. I can't believe someday we will be shoulder to shoulder...and then we will be looking up at them, won't we?


Jerri said...

My money's on a 7th fountain. Rojo knows things.

kario said...

Seven is the magic number, isn't it? And Rojo is the magic boy, so I'm thinking it fits.