This afternoon, we spent a few hours with our friends from Christ Church PCA at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown, Texas. This post is not about the park, nor is it about the church. Instead, I just felt like writing about what a terrific and relaxing afternoon I had with my family. I didn’t bring my camera, but I wanted to share our day with you.
Shortly after we arrived, I took my seven-year-old daughter, Aleah, down to the mostly-dry riverbed to walk around. She was a little hesitant because of all the “wobbly rocks” at first, but she warmed to the idea and ran ahead of me some distance.
We got to a place where the water started again, pooling to a couple of feet in depth. I got my son Brandon, and we spent at least 30-40 minutes there while I taught them how to properly skip rocks. Frankly, I need to do this type of thing more often, since one of my fondest memories as a child was from the time I spent exploring the creeks near my grandparents’ house in east Dallas. Brandon surprised me by throwing some VERY large rocks and splashing himself. I cringed inwardly, since he is not usually a “rough and tumble” kind of kid, but when I asked him if that was fun, he grinned and said, “THIS IS A BLAST!”
One of Aleah’s friends showed up, and they got to feed bread to the group of assertive ducks at the water’s edge. I went back toward the picnic area with Brandon to grab some food. Afterwards, a couple of his friends were in the large, flat field playing football. Well, more like throwing the ball and then sort of tackling each other. I joined them and asked Brandon if he wanted to play, too. He seemed reticent (“my hands are full”, etc.), but when I finally got him started he had a great time and did really well. You have to understand that he is a really big kid with a lot of brute strength, so tackling or trying to strip the ball came pretty naturally for him. Although he is still nine years old, most people peg him at about 12, since he’s 5’2″ or so already.
We played out there for what felt like an hour or so, and I got a decent workout myself. I had forgotten how much I enjoy playing football, truth be known. I played in high school (mainly as a defensive end and sometimes as a tight end), but when I was a kid, we had a Nerf ball like the one we used today. Memories….
Just before we left, we managed to misplace our two-year-old daughter for about 45 seconds as it was getting dark. This always feels like an eternity, and I don’t do a very good job of remaining overly calm. It turns out that she wandered over to the parking lot area – TWICE. I don’t know what was attractive to her over there, but it freaked us out to think how close she came to being hurt. Despite this, I had a terrific afternoon, and I would like to return soon.
Brandon’s comment to me as we were leaving was quite telling;
“Dad, we really need to play football more often.”
Sounds like a plan to me!