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Friday, April 07, 2006

Prehistoric Fairy Eggs

Each day in Alaska offers a new adventure. Especially in spring, when you’re never sure until you wake up and peek out the window whether it is still going to be spring, or if the world will have regressed back into winter. Yesterday morning, for instance I awoke to two inches of new snow. Didn’t even know it was coming. During the winter proper, I carefully watch the forecasts and radar in eager anticipation of snow, but this time of year, I just assume its going to be partly sunny and mild every day. I don’t mind snow in April. Our days are 14 hours long now, so light is not an issue, and the likelihood of snow sticking around is highly unlikely.

The previous day had been a beautiful, quintessential April Anchorage day. What with the time change, the kids have been out-sleeping me, so I am awoken by the sun, rather the scraping of kitchen stools and blood-curdling screams of clashing childrens’ personalities. The morning was spent in a long walk with Darlene the end of which had us both peeling off gloves, and zipping open jackets. Darlene’s husband Jeff called to say he spotted the first mallard of the season. I commented that my avian harbinger is the ever-familiar seagull, which I haven’t yet spotted.

The afternoon was spent reading “Jane Eyre” – the April bookclub selection. I could hardly put it down. It’s so exciting and so romantic that more than once at the end of a chapter I was left sighing heavily and wiping tears from my eyes. It is, truly, the most romantic book I’ve ever read. (Sigh) Anyway, enough of that.

Bruce and I ate a late dinner due to an error in judgment regarding how long it would take to make the chicken. My roux took almost an hour to brown to an acceptable level, so we didn’t eat until almost 7pm. Then, it was little kids to bed.

I’m not sure how the rest of us all ended up outside in the culdesac, but there we were, still almost two hours from sunset, with neighbor Gus trying to teach Jack to ride his bicycle (he still hasn’t figured it out sans training wheels). Sabrina was also zipping around with the help of training wheels, and Bruce was staining wood for the dressers he’s assembling for Ellie and Evan.

I wandered about the culdesac, crunching over the remaining hills of slush, hunting for the b-b’s a different neighbor’s son likes to shoot with his friends. My kids, especially Sabrina, love collecting the used b-b’s. They are all different colors and kind of fun to discover. So, I was busying myself with collecting, followed by Jet, Gus’s black lab, and Charley, Gus' oldest son.

Charley wanted to know why I was collecting them. I explained that lately Sabrina has been collecting items discarded by fairies. Sabrina believes evidence of fairies is everywhere, like a rogue swatch of iridescent ribbons, or a tiny tumbling feather. I figured these balls must surely also be fairy-stuff, with their bright colors and tiny proportions. Maybe they were fairy eggs.

“They look kind of prehistoric to me,” Charley observed.

“Hmmm. They do, don’t they?” I agreed. “Maybe they’re prehistoric fairy eggs.”

Charley and I gave each other conspiratorial grins.

Despite Gus’ most earnest efforts, we ended the evening little closer to Jack and Sabrina being able to ride their bikes properly. But, we had found evidence of many, many fairies: a certain enchantment, the promise of warmer days.

Sabrina is keeping the prehistoric fairy eggs in a plastic cup in the basket of her bicycle. As soon as this morning’s snow melts, I hope they will work their magic on teaching her to ride without training wheels.


At 2:24 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

I lived in Alaska as a child. I went to Rabbit Creek elementary in 1970.

At 2:26 PM, Blogger Linda said...

Small world, Madie! My two oldest go to Rabbit Creek right now!

At 3:58 PM, Blogger Gateway School and Learning Center said...

When the snow clears off our driveway the kids can practice here.


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