I am participating in the March Slice of Life Story Challenge. Thanks to the co-authors of Two Writing Teachers for creating this supportive community.
Excuse me, can we show you something?
I was working a shift as a volunteer in the Children’s Garden at Longwood Gardens when I was approached by two little boys, about five years old. They led me to an out-of-the-way alcove and pointed to a small door.
What’s that? Who lives in there?
I don’t know. Who do you think lives in there?
Maybe it’s a fairy, or the man who takes care of the garden.
Shhh (ear cupped to door)…I think I hear something. Maybe it’s an animal, maybe a tiger.
I think it’s my girlfriend!
This last remark was, of course, followed by lots of laughter. The boys then led me to a different part of the garden known as the Grotto Cove where a fog-generated fountain and a spiral staircase create a mysterious atmosphere and the feeling of being in a castle. That area always makes me feel like I have stepped into the pages of Harry Potter.
Where does the smoke come from?
Are there fish in there?
Look! There are ants crawling up the railing, and here’s a spider!
We spent the next few minutes carefully observing the iron railing on the staircase, discovering hidden objects and sharing wonderings about them.
It was a brief encounter, but it was the best part of my day. It’s what this wonderful garden is designed to do – cultivate curiosity in children. As it states on my training manual:
…They [children] will explore the world with all of their senses, play at discovery,
and communicate their discoveries to those around them. Sharing the wonder and
magic of a garden with them is a gift to all.