As we emerged from the garage, Pippi burst ahead on her razor scooter, "I'm a policeman and a fireman and an ambulance." Bardo tried to keep up on his Radio Flyer scooter, to no avail. He rides Pippi's scooter all day long when she's not home, and the plastic radio flyer is far far beneath him. He didn't complain, though. He just told me it had rocket boosters in the back and plugged along to his own self-sung soundtrack, the rythm of the Perry the platypus theme song from Phineas and Ferb , "Doodoodeedoodum doodoodeedoodum..."
Bardo would pause to ask a burning question here and there. "Why do they have street lights?" "How do they know to turn on?" I kept asking him, "Are you tired? Do you want to go home?" His reply was always, "No, no, I'm not tired." Pippi (or should I say, Ginny Weasely) even tried to trick him into coming home. "Look. That yellow sign means someone's in danger. We're going to go save them and then take them home." But Bardo had the goal to get to the duck pond, and he would not rest until he found some awake ducks to feed.
The trail around the duck pond is very dark. Bardo kept talking about how spooky it was. He says spooky in a really cute way. He spends a little extra time pronouncing the vowel, making spooky more like spoooooky. Pippi, the leader of our pack, came racing back to whisper in my ear, "Mom, I saw an alligator in the water." She stayed as clear of the water as possible while they fed the "awake" ducks. I kept Boo strapped in the stroller. She just ate the bread I gave her. Bardo, of course, came back wanting more bread for the ducks.
On the way back, Pippi turned on full blown Harry Potter mode, telling Bardo he'd better hurry because the Whomping Willow was about to wake up. She made up a story about how a dragon had actually been the cause of the gaping whole in her jeans. Meanwhile, Bardo is tiptoeing past the trees since it's the only way to avoid "gnome snakes." His scooter becomes cumbersome. Boo wants it, so we tip the stroller back and tuck the scooter underneath the stroller so Boo can hang on to the handle bars as the stroller rolls it along. She loves this and holds on the rest of the walk home.
Bardo takes over Pippi's scooter, and she runs as she tells me story after story about her dragons that her older brother Charlie allowed her to keep. "Many say that you cannot domesticate a dragon," she tells me, "But I know this isn't true..." Pippi calls Bardo Ronald Weasley trying to get him in on her game, but with a flick of his pretend wand and a soft "ch" from his mouth, he gazes at the stars and says, "Today I'm Bardo. And I'm 4."
Today, I'm The Silly Witch, and I'm 33, and I don't ever want to forget this night walk, the perfectness of the weather, the beauty of the trees, and the beautiful imaginations of my children.