There is little doubt that Young Morgan, aka The Duracell Bunny, has a unique take on problem-solving.
During a (very)
early morning conversation, snuggled up together in my super-size bed (“Why do you have such a big bed? Is it because you're afraid you’ll fall out?”) my grandson asks me why his Grandad now needs the combined assistance of a stair-lift,
a wheelchair and a mobility scooter - dubbed the “Grandadmobile” by the (Not So Very Little) Welsh Boys - to get around. I explain, using a minimum of medical terms, how Grandad’s legs don't work properly anymore. “When you walk,”
I say, “you put one foot in front of the other, don't you? Grandad wants to do that but his head won't give him the right instructions so he can't move his feet the way you do.” The Duracell Bunny considers this for a nano-second: “Why doesn't
he just jump?” he asks. Oh, how I love that boy.
Yesterday we spent most of the day on the beach in lovely Littlehampton, known in days of yore, as “The
Children’s Paradise.” We set up camp just below the prom, so that Mr B could stay sitting in the Grandadmobile, offering lifts to each boy in turn. His status as Super Grandad is pleasingly on the rise, bolstered still further when he, assisted
by Our Boy, father of the threesome, took them to the fair aka Harbour Park. The Darling Daughter in Law and I stayed behind on the beach, ostensibly to keep an eye on all our possessions, chatting idly before snoozing companionably in the afternoon sunshine.
It's no wonder we were tired. A major endeavour of the afternoon was to build a boat in the sand, near the water’s edge, then wait for the incoming tide to wash it
away while all the time the boys tried valiantly to hold back the waves like a Trio of present day King Canutes. Sam, James and their parents had spent the best part of an hour building their boat when along came Morgan and I to add a few “embellishments.”
Morgan added perfectly formed wings on each side of the boat while my contribution was to use a discarded drinks cup to build a row of sandcastles on the boat’s prow, giving it the appearance of a sandy dinosaur. My Rascal would have been so proud of
me. These excellent additions turned a perfectly serviceable looking vessel into a mythical monster. I dubbed it The Flying Sandosaurus.
Sadly the Sandosaurus
eventually succumbed to the tide as we all knew it would - so we repaired to Base Camp where the offer of ice cream proved that there is no Sand-Related Disaster that can't be mitigated by a Mr Whippy (with flake) or an Oreo Ice Cream.
Today, of course, was Father’s Day and a chance for Mr B and his son to celebrate fatherhood together. The Welsh Boys had all drawn home-made cards for their Dad. Sam’s
drawing of all the family was spot on with his bespectacled father sporting a tee-shirt carrying the legend “No 1 Dad.” Inside an excellent drawing of a clown, with the affectionate caption: “You!” James had drawn a picture of a footballer
kicking a goal and applauded his Dad (who is Coach Steve to one of the Heath Park Rangers teams) for being “the best coach ever.”
card for Mr B read: “Dad I love how we don't even have to say out loud that I’m your favourite child!” He was, it must be said, a little miffed that the card from one of his sisters raised an even greater laugh: it depicted a lugubrious-looking
dog on the front with the caption: : “It’s hard to keep all the JOY and EXCITEMENT under control!” Given Mr B’s generally jaundiced approach to Father's Day - he considers it a cynical ploy on the part of the manufacturers of greetings
cards - it's somewhat appropriate and lovingly meant.
I had booked a pub lunch for the seven of us - haute cuisine it may not have been but both Fathers
indulged in a “Big Daddy Burger.” Mr B has been hankering after one on every lunch visit we pay to this pub - all he needed was encouragement and a Partner in Burger Crime.
Here’s to all the Dads on Father’s Day. To every Dad who has worked his socks off for his family, who has done his best to help with Maths homework, who has coached his son or daughter’s football team or stood on
a touchline to give loving support. Who has clowned around - and been stern when necessary. Who has read bedtime stories to young’uns - and driven miles to take student offspring to college or uni.
To every Dad - you know who you are - who has built a boat of sand at the water’s edge and watched his kids shriek with mock horror and real delight as the sea crept in.
Happy Father’s Day to every one of you.