We told the kids we were going to a park. I think they were expecting brightly colored slides, artificial mulch, and possibly a tire swing. Those are the best. But we ended up at more of a reserve with nothing to entertain us but a walk. And it was hot. And some of us wore clothes that should be retired, or called a tunic instead of a dress.I tried to ration my water. I seem to be extra thirsty these days. But I've never been very good at planning ahead or delayed gratification, so it was soon gone (at least I admit it, right?) Each of the girls had their own water, and I might have snuck a sip or two from the least suspicious looking bottles. As we struck out, there were complaints that this was most certainly NOT a park, and that walking WAS NOT a fun thing to do. We had never been before, so we couldn't promise any sort of reward or goal, but pressed on trying to distract and be positive.
We were all in it together, taking turns pushing (and sitting in) the stroller. The trees were towering, and it felt kind of like a Hansel and Gretel stroll, never sure what was around each bend.
There was a brief hot, sunny, bare patch that was almost unbearable, the kind where you hear the cicadas all buzzing and things start to look a little bit blurry, but it was short and we were soon back under the protection of shade walking through bits of swampy area.
I'll admit I put my darting eyes on, half expecting an alligator to pop up to say hello, and trying to remember what they told us to do at the alligator farm field trip with Olive perchance we ran into one. It's a myth to run in a zig zag pattern, you know. I think I decided we would just run straight. And maybe scream. That would probably scare any creature, to have 6 baby dills screaming in unison.
Fortunately for us (and the gators) we didn't meet any. But,
after a few scraped knees,
quietly creeping creatures (this was much bigger than it appears in the photo, but nobody would hold up their finger for comparison sake, and of course I was the one taking the photo, so it couldn't possibly have been me),
and vibrant, earthy treasures,we came to the end of the path where we were met with a scene that could have been plucked straight out of a mythological tale with a little lake of glass, surrounded by magical trees. Isn't that how life tends to be. Sometimes we have no idea where it's taking us, and it isn't always pleasant, but so worth it. I told Ryan we need to come back with a picnic basket. Now that we know.