Monday, May 4, 2009

As full of spirit as the month of May

With the advent of summer comes a new threat to the lovingly planted, if anarchically laid out flower beds in our back garden: a menace additional to the fox orgies, incontinent cats and miasmas of cement dust generated by nearby ‘refurbs’ (which go on ceaselessly in our street, recession or no.) Leo, at 20 months, has now discovered the pleasures of the outdoor life and, inevitably, of football. 
The flora face a triple jeopardy. First the ball is booted or thrown into the flower beds; then Leo toddles in after it; then he goes back in again (and again and again), just because we have told him not to. I suppose it is only natural that a toddler should test the boundaries, now and again. I just wish he would test them well away from the nascent delphiniums and fuchsias.
I admit to not being very good at enforcing Leo’s boundaries, though I try to do my share. His strength is considerable, and his vocals could raise the roof off the Albert Hall. At the same time, he has such an appetite for life, such an obvious delight in the world around him, that it’s almost impossible to tell him off without breaking into a smile.
Of course, one day Leo’s misadventures won’t be my responsibility. He will have learned to respect the borders, herbaceous and otherwise. He will probably prefer not to be carried up to bed and tickled when he gets there, nor to fall asleep while holding on to my ear. 
I'm not impatient for that day.

1 comment:

Catharine Withenay said...

Thank you for coming by my blog - and thank you for your excellent book!

Perhaps a few strategically placed holly bushes would curb Leo's enthusiasm? Then again, they may puncture several footballs before he's really ready to take that grief.