Ohhh, it’s hot today. The kind of hot that makes you want to lie in a hammock under a sprinkler with a cold drink in your hand. Sticky, breathless, exhausting.

Zander, our two dogs (Riley and Roxy) and I are spending the week at my mother-in-law’s while Mark is away. No air conditioning. No wading pool. No hammock. But lots of cold drinks and no housework or cooking to do.

It’s been hot since we arrived 3 days ago and we’ve been hanging around the house a lot, sitting in the shade and trying to stay cool so we’re all getting a bit restless. All four of us, humans and dogs, are in need of a good run-around.

So this morning, Zander and I ate a quick breakfast and drove across town to the “big” park.

Ever-cautious, Zander was late to start walking and he still wobbles a lot, especially on grass. And like all toddlers, he’s easily distracted. It was a painfully slow walk from the car, across the parking lot and grass, to the slides.  Our route was anything but direct and I found myself lifting him, turning him in the right direction, and pointing to the slide. Impatient to get to the action.

The third time I reminded Zander of our destination, he looked up and me and held his hands out, palms up, and said “what?”. Ok, it was more of a “wa?”, but the look on his face and his hand gestures said it all. “What’s your hurry, Mum?”.


What was my hurry? I’ve got a kid that’s wonderfully curious, a big park to explore, and nothing but time on my hands. Does it matter if we don’t make it to the slide? Nope.

So I followed Zander’s lead and did what he did. We squatted in the grass and found a dead worm. Ripped it apart then stabbed the bits with a stick (maybe not great Karma, but it was dead…) and watched the ants move in. Picked the bark off the stick. Smelled some clover. Rolled around and ended on our backs with feet in the air. Picked up every tiny bit of garbage we came across. And actually hugged a tree. 

Finally, Zander stood up, nodded his head as if to say “yup, my work is done here” and made a bee-line for the slide.

It’s not every day that we have the time to stop and smell the clover, but with any luck we’ll be doing it more often.