Yesterday felt like the perfect spring day, even though spring is still weeks away. There was a warm breeze blowing up the creek valley, and a clear blue sky reflected in the creek’s shallow pools.
I should have probably started getting my raised beds ready for planting. I could have sat comfortably down on the rails and pulled loose last summer’s weeds. Or perhaps I should have worked up a sweat and pitched out the accumulated layers of straw from the chicken coop and pigeon gazebo. Or I might have spent the day sorting through the pile of scrap metal down by the barn, saving what we think we might really use again, and piling up the rest in the back of the truck for a trip to the recycling center.
Greg might have worked on the log cabin, or pulled the old jeep back into his shop and crawled under it to do whatever it is that he does that I do really not really understand. All I know is that when he crawls out, he is exceptionally dirty.
Yes, there certainly were a lot of things that we could have done, but we did not do any of them. Not a single one. Instead we called up our city dwelling daughter and asked to borrow our grandchildren for the day and go treasure hunting. I was quite excited.
We drove into town and picked the young’uns up, and as they climbed into the back seat I turned around and handed them each an allowance for the day. Greg and I had the same allowance, and we were off, headed to one of our favorite treasure haunts, just north of the city.
The parking lot was crowded. We hurried into the store, fearful that someone else would find our unknown treasure. Greg and I began to walk up and down the aisles, looking at this treasure and that. The young’uns pulled us ahead. We lingered. They did not, and it quickly occurred to us that these were our treasures, not theirs.
In what seemed like no time, we had covered the vast expanse of row after row of ancient items, and I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised to see that each young’un had found a few special things to take home. At the checkout counter, however, they were quick to realize that they still had pockets filled with coins and dollar bills.
Greg and I asked what they would like to do next. They smiled, but politely remained quiet. I raised my eyebrows and suggested, “How about we stop by the mall?” Their eyes lit up as they exclaimed an enthusiastic “Yes”.
So we were off to the mall on the north side of the city. Greg and I had not been there in years, but it felt more like decades. We followed the young’uns around. They knew exactly what they were looking for, and seemed to know the layout of its shops and escalators by heart. We lingered in a store filled with tee shirts and young peoples’ jewelry. We walked past walls of many colored caps, only to walk past them again, and again. And our grandchildren were filled with obvious energy and delight.
In time their pockets were empty, and in their hands they carried their mall found treasures, a wallet and a necklace.
We headed back to drop them off at their mother’s suburban home. Our hugs were long and thankful, and as Greg and I started the long drive back out to the creek, it occurred to me that the days’ treasures did not lie amid the isles and isles of antiques, or even among the many shops at the mall. The real treasure was the time we shared with our grandchildren, our ever so precious young’uns. I smiled. Life is a wonderful treasure indeed.