Saturday, July 15, 2006

Sprinklers in the summertime

Sunday evening, late in the day, I watered my front yard.

The Texas heat has scorched my grass pretty badly this year. Water rationing is in place. So, things are beginning to really "brown up."

I have this old-fashioned sprinkler that will just about cover the entire lawn with one setting. It's one of those old, what I call, "poppin" sprinklers that makes a rat-tat-tat sound as it pops the spurts of water out across its 90 degree sweep. Two settings really gives me good coverage.

I let the water run for about 30 minutes in one position. Then, I move it to the opposite corner of the yard to finish up.

The last two times I have watered the grass I've had the privilege of "meeting" (not formally, since I don't know his name) a little boy from down the street. I would guess that he is about 12-years-old, but he could be a little older.

He loves to run and play in my sprinkler.

Time before last he rode his bicycle up and down the sidewalk being careful to time his arrival right in the midst of the sprinkler's best spray. He laughs and hollers and has a blast!

Last evening he was back, this time with a friend. The young girl who was with him may have been an older sister. They had real fun with the water.

I felt sort of bad when I went out to turn off the water that had been running for over an hour.

"You playing in the sprinkler?" I asked as I came out of my house.

"Yes sir," he replied.

"That's good! Sorry that I have to turn it off now," I explained.

"That's okay," he offered with a huge grin.

"Come back next time you see the water running," I invited them.

"Okay!" he said as he and his sister walked away up our street.

Cool, simple, wonderful exchange on a hot Texas night in the city.

Poor kids from an immigrant family. Great attitudes, great smiles, great hearts--looking for a little, ordinary play. Not an abundance of "stuff" in their reach, but great imagination and capacity for joy and playfulness.

I'm really glad to have them for neighbors.

Funny how it is that the older I get the more important really simple things are to me.

How about you?

1 comment:

MommyHAM said...

Larry,

That warms my heart to read... reminds me of my childhood, where we didn't have much as a family, but we had a lot as a community.

Now, with my own kids, I love hearing a shy new child come up and say, "Can her play with me?" referring to my daughter, who at age 5, is the neighborhood evangelist/outreach worker! I smile, and say, "Of course sweetie, as long as your mommy or daddy know you're here - want something cold to drink?"

Summertime is time for memories...and for those kids, a time of forming lasting impressions.