My five year old son is swimming in the pool as I sit here at the patio table working on my laptop. It’s 9pm on a Saturday night on the outskirts of Phoenix and still 90 degrees outside. My five year old has a wild, creative imagination and says the funniest things. He’s a babbler so while he’s swimming he’s talking to me non-stop, making it a little difficult to concentrate but he’s so entertaining.
“Mom, do you know what they say in the old country?” I choke on a swallow of coffee. He often talks as if he’s been around the world several times over and has lived years beyond my own life.
“What do you mean, Ryan?”, a reply I repeat several several times a day.
“You know, in the old country before we had the pool. In the old country, they would say you had to scrape the golf balls out of the pool.” To you, reading this, I must explain that we have a small putting green next to the pool and we’re storing the golf balls in the bottom of the pool to keep them away from our rather large Goldendoodle, Apollo, who thinks these little white balls might be snacks. Yes, there are likely better places to store these but I think my husband kicked them all in there one afternoon after retrieving one from Apollo’s mouth for the fifth time. As Ryan generally gets in trouble if he putts the balls into the pool he’s fascinated about why they’re in there permanently now.
Ryan goes back to playing basketball in the pool with a volleyball and a broken basketball hoop and I have a moment of relative silence against the splishing and splashing of the ball in the water. As soon as there’s movement – his father coming out to the patio to join us – Ryan’s jabbering begins again.
“Did you know there’s a little, very tiny man working in the pool with a hammer?”
“Really?”, I say. My husband is less patient with the constant talking so he suggests Ryan play the quiet game for a little while.
“Oh! I can play that game. That’s the one where you sit and be quiet for awhile, right?”
“Right,” says his father.
“What do I get if I win?”
“You’ve already lost, now, Ryan.”
“Can I try again? I think I can win.”
“Okay, try again.”
Two seconds later: “Did I win this time?”
My husband shakes his head and I giggle at his useless persistence. I already know there’s no quieting this child and while I wish he would never grow up because he’s just so darn cute, I long to see what he will become some day.