We seem to have fewer pictures this season. Instead of photos of the kids at the pool, I'm more apt to regard the experience itself as my souvenir. The experience, and the effects -- wet towels over the rail, chlorine-scented curls and light tan lines remind me of family fun. Interesting, though, how the nature of a normal day is the first memory to fade.
We position thick foam to fit the wagon bed, layer blankets on top, rolling one end to make a pillow for her head, the other to cushion her feet against the edge, the rail having been removed to accommodate her length. We talk to her on the way, telling her we’ll listen to music and Tucker will dance with friends, she’ll hear familiar voices there, and hold new hands too. She smiles. A lot, actually. Children peer over the side, curious. She can’t see you, but she can hear your voice. You can say “Hi, Celia" or touch her hand. Oh look, you made her smile again! We repeat the explanation as they gain confidence; they ask, and we answer, more questions. They return throughout the lawn concert, most saying goodbye multiple times when we need to head home. Tucker leads the way, whispering quietly just blocks from our house, My had fun at the library.
There are more things I’d like to tell, so many stories I do not make time to record. The way Celia's laugh remains one of the only things that averts Tuck's attention, causes him to slow down. Or how, on a day just before noon of the year, gray clouds pull apart like theater curtains, revealing blue skies and a sun so radiant it dries out the soggy ground and we head out, again, a list of treasures to look for around the neighborhood. And about the things Tuck says -- shaking hands of new friends with nice to meet you's, picking flowers for guests (a sweet gesture until he throws them toward the recipient and says fetch), turning over earth to find big bugs and telling everyone Daddy got all the crocodiles from under his bed and took them back to the zoo.
The moments are many, especially compared to pictures and words. I am hardly capable of capturing them all on paper, preserving each on film. In the summer there is so much I like to do, and see, that I don’t make time to tell so much. I do hope that some of the normal stuff sticks with me, though.