Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Are we lost now?

Grandma's safety patrol

We own a pint-size grandkid car that small children can drive.
They simply sit in the driver's seat and push on the pedal and it goes.
The grandchildren who come to visit love it.
They're in charge.
When they push down, the car lurches or sails forward, depending on the driver's natural ability and fear factor.
When they let off the gas pedal, the car stops.
As long as an adult is near by to see that the car doesn't leave the grass or the sidewalk, it's a pretty safe deal.
Sometimes it takes some convincing, though.
When we had 6-year-old Emma and 2-year-old Erica over this weekend, Emma wanted to drive her little sister around.
Emma hasn't been here as much as some of the other grandkids so she was a little erratic.
She'd push the pedal and if the car took off too quickly, she'd stop.
And then start again.
And stop.
For Erica, it was a little too much of a bumpy ride. She looked at us as if we'd sentenced her to certain doom.
As Emma took off down the block, she picked up some speed.
I got on the bike to keep up with her.
Marc loped along behind.
She went around the corner, only stopping here and there to see if we were lost yet.
Marc kept telling her he knew where we were so she'd take off again.
As we ventured on, her questions came a little more frequently.
"Are we lost?" she asked each time, searching our faces to see if we were worried.
"No," we told her. "We know this street. We're OK."
After several more turns and a fairly long ride, Erica's face relaxed a bit. I think she figured she was going to survive this adventure.
Stopping at the stop sign
Emma became more serious as she looked for familiar landmarks.
At last, we turned the corner to our house. I thought she'd be thrilled and surprised.
But she looked at me again and said, one last time, "Are we lost now?"

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