The boy leads the way. His little legs motoring down the grassy hill, a controlled tumble to the bottom. With a shriek he flaps his arms and lifts his face to the rapidly setting sun. Daddy scoops him up and spins him around. He seems to be tasting the moment with a wide-mouthed, toothy grin. Enthusiasm personified.
His sister runs after him, arms akimbo. Not the most graceful gait, a half prance/half sprint, but joyful… elated to be free. The crunch of the frosty grass beneath her feet competes with her breathless giggles.
A game of tag ensues, although she is much more interested in the “getting” than the “being gotten.” Perpetually “It.” We are her willing quarry.
We’ve abandoned our stroller at the sleek, state-of-the-art play-park long ago. Wilder pursuits beckon. Wide open spaces begging us to stretch our legs.
The little people notice their oversized shadows. Tall gangly silhouettes do silly dances on the sun-kissed grass. The world is a buttery yellow.
We wander onto the baseball diamond, stirring up clouds of red dust. Daddy demonstrates the Right Way to fake a pitch. The girl “catches.” The boy cheers with gusto. We run the bases. Then again for good measure.
I try to capture a few images on my phone. But they are pale reflections of our unexpected adventure. It’s too precious to hold in my hands.
It’s what we were meant for. Somehow a simple walk to the park, as much like worship as any sacred tradition. In the thrill of everyday beauty, I feel God’s pleasure.
So here’s us, where play belongs to all ages.