It was a morning like this.
The overnite rain had scrubbed the world a fresh and sparkling clean. The air was crisp. The sun dazzlingly bright.
It was a morning just like this that my father gently awoke me.
Shhh…he motioned with his finger to his lips..and beckoned me to follow. No need to get dressed..he offered. A summer nightie and flip flops on my feet – were all that I wore.
Under a fence and across a meadow. I remember that sweet smell of honeysuckle..how it infused the air with its scent. I remember squinting in the low and blinding light. I remember trotting along beside him..wanting so desperately to match his steady gait. We walked and walked and walked some more. It seemed – from my knee-high point of view – that we walked forever.
And then – there it was. A little pond..a surprising oasis – hidden in the midst of the tall grasses. I remember the sound of the ducks….quacking their quackity quack. Interrupting the silence.
There we were – the two of us …just he and me and some ducks and their newborn chicks. We squatted at that water’s edge and watched and laughed and threw breadcrumbs as the mother and father ducks darted and dashed and dove down and under..catching the tiny crumbs in their beaks and sharing them with their hungry babes. For me – at my tender young age – it felt as if we were there for hours. For he – at a much older one – I’m sure now it was only a moment among so many in his longer lifeline. Time that is immeasurable and often relative. Precious time spent – a father and his daughter.
It was a morning just like this.
One quarter century and a whole generation later. Another time..another place...another country - in fact.
I found myself tiptoe-ing into my sleeping son’s room…gently awakening him.
Shhh…I beckoned. Come with me.
The two of us – just he and me – went out to feed the Canada Geese and their newborn goslings. We sat and watched and shared bits and pieces of stale bread..we'd brought with us. We laughed at their antics and what appeared to be such fun and folly. He remembers it as hours spent at the pond’s edge. I remember it as only a few short moments. Too short in the long scheme of time. Time that can’t be measured..weighed..quantified or counted. Precious time – a mother and her son.
And now – on a morning just like this..and like those that came before - I find myself looking back..and looking forward.
Someday – I'd like to think and imagine - it’ll be my boy and his daughter.
That on a morning - just like this - he'll wake her..and they'll have their own little adventure. And that on that someday – they’ll be just like me and my father.