Sunday, April 3, 2016
The story I started to tell you was this. Sunday afternoon, everyone was tired, grandma could hardly walk because of the foot pain. There were remnants of chocolate bunnies everywhere. The front ramp was covered in colored confetti from the cascarones. Tricycles lay tipped here and there. The dirt pile had been thoroughly dug and abandonded. The Cedar tree was down and trimmed. B was inside reading and sneaking chocolate eggs and girl scout cookies whenever he could.
Able stepped up and volunteered to take Zane and Maggie on an adventure. An adventure along the creek. Those are the best, always. I'm not sure if they started out under the bridge or not, but they eventually climbed down to the creek by using the exposed roots of a huge tree as a ladder; risking life and limb, which is what good adventures are all about. Am I right? (This picture is of the two little adventurers the night before, all slicked up for Easter Mass.)
Kari and I were resting on the patio chairs and we heard yelling. My first thought was that someone had broken a leg. (Negative thinking on my part.) Kari, Brent and I headed to the creek edge to help if we could. No one was hurt. All three of them were digging into the bank (the bank is about twenty feet high, maybe more) with sticks. They were covered in dust and grinning like chimpanzees. Embedded in the creek bank at that spot are the remains of the first house, well a dugout really, that Able's great grandpa George lived in after he made the Run of 1893. You can see the stones stacked up on either side of where the door would have been. The dugout was filled in with dirt way before I ever came out here to live. We rediscover it at regular intervals.
Able and the kids had discovered glass bottles hiding in the dirt. TREASURE, there was no other word for it. They were all so excited they were about to pee themselves. They dug a few bottles out and tossed them up to us, Brent fell over, trying to avoid being hit in the face by one of the bottles. Blood. It just got better and better. (No, he wasn't hurt badly.)
They decided that was all they could dig out without tools and have planned another trip next time they are at the farm. They have a plan to take along picks, trowels, a bag and a rope so we can help them haul everything up to the top. They climbed back up the roots, scrambling like monkeys. Kari told me later that Zane was so excited by the time he got to the top of the bank that he was wiping tears out of his eyes. I need to remember to take them on a field trip down to Sam's homestead where there is another dugout, just like this one, that is not buried. It is still out in the open and has it's roof and everything. I have a picture of Sam's family standing in front of it somewhere. (Sam was George's big brother and they built his dugout first and then came up here and dug this one.)
I used to lead adventures like that when my kids were little, but I just don't have either the arm strength or the energy to do it now. I'm glad my kids and their spouses step in and do the honors. We can play pirate in the house all day long, but it doesn't compare in any way, shape or form to finding real buried treasure along the creek.