And then we found a duck
This past summer Mommy and the girls took off on a trip, so the four boys and I headed to the wilderness. We grabbed our canoes and kayaks, food and gear and paddled out to an island.
The day started off well. The weather was hot and the water was still so we didn't have to battle waves. After a couple hours, my boys were getting exhausted and hungry and we still hadn't found this elusive island. My "It's just around the next bend!" wasn't working so well.
Finally, we did find a the island, a nice campground and with a renewed burst of energy started setting up camp and swimming.
"Where is our dry bag of clothes?" I asked. We searched everywhere. Well this was going to be interesting. Four boys, a dad and only our swimming trunks ... hmmm...
"What about that other dry bag with our lighter? And bug spray? Again we searched everywhere. Drat! We left two bags behind in the minivan!
So, here we were. A long way from home (too far to paddle back in one day), little to no clothing, no bug spray and no lighter. Well, the unexpected is where adventure begins.
We had much of the day ahead of us and so we swam up a storm and enjoyed the sunshine.
Eventually, the day grew long, supper came and went (we found a flint), and the children were looking for something to do.
Then we found a toy duck.
The games boys can come up with when there is no devices, video games, distractions and little to do. The duck became our centre of attention and was the nexus for many new games. Our favourite game being target practice. We set up various shooting distances and riddled the duck with rock shots. Much fun was had and still continued into the morning.
Before we left, the boys debated whether or not to take the duck home with us. It was decided that others may have as much fun as we had, so we left it.
The trip, despite the unexpected, was a success.
I learned something though - in society, we spend a lot of money on stuff and things to help keep our children entertained. Perhaps all our kids really need is to get outside for a while, away from the 'stuff' and let the play and creativity come back.
Perhaps, all they need is a toy duck.