Kidness

I’m at a restaurant in town with my parents, expecting to meet my daughters. My older daughter walks in alone, and I ask, What’s up? Where’s your sister?

She’s busy apparently, in a kid kind of way, hiding in the back of her friend’s car, so she and the friend can surprise the friend’s mother.

Well, I think, good luck to the mother.

In a few minutes my daughter appears, in soccer practice shorts, her face tanned and glowing. That, she says, was so fun. She assures me the mother wasn’t angry, preoccupied with a math homework assignment, instead.

In the early morning dark, I lie awake, listening to the crickets’ low sizzle. Like the lilacs, the mating songbirds have finished for this year. On the grass beside my garden lies a swimming floatie that needs to head back into the barn.

End of August, turn of seasons. Except, perhaps, if you’re in the season of being 13: keep on being 13 for a while yet.

Here’s an unrelated quote from what I’m reading: Lauren Markham’s The Faraway Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life:

The United States cannot at once be isolationist — build a wall, kill the trade deals — and global, selectively reaping the benefits of an international economy, like lower-cost imports, cut-rate outsourced workforce, and cheap labor in our fields here at home. We have played a major part in creating the problem of what has become of Central America, and we must play a major part in solving it.

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