Sunday, April 16, 2006

Birds of a Feather

Claire and I ventured outside today here in the great white north. Now that spring is in the air and all of have had our seasonal flu, it seems reasonable enough to subject our Irish bodies to the sunshine. Shaughan and Eirann rode their bikes while Claire and I did the parental panic as they nipped across streets and curbs to eventually arrive at the park.

I spent the morning reading about Freud and the development of psychoanalysis, hence the reason for noticing something different today. The kids ran daft for 15 minutes, up and down slides and climbing over anything in their way. I got distracted for a moment chatting with one of the other dads only to glance back and see all the kids more or less sitting on each other in one corner of the sanded area. Then the fun began. There was one bucket, one spade, one rake...and seven kids. Everyone wanted to do the same thing at the same time as all the parents talked about how wild kids are and the joys of teaching them if they share less than we do.

The sanded area was approximately 25 ft long and 10 ft wide and all the kids sat in the tightest possible edge taking up about 3 square feet all getting occasionally agitated as they invaded each others spaces. The need to belong and be part of the action seems to be in us from a child. Maybe this is why we live in a big city when there is a vast unexplored world.

Mark Dowds


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