Really, all that’s wrong with adults is that they’ve grown too tall. You need only spend some time in the company of a three-year-old to figure it out. So much of the good stuff is at ground level.
Like damp worms that stretch as you pull them from their earthy abodes to examine their cool, glistening forms in the palm of your hand. Or how about a minuscule wild strawberry spied along the trail’s edge and eaten, stem and all, along with some grains of sand.
Puddles are another thing we miss out on from our lofty altitude. They are vast oceans carrying straws to faraway shores; glassy mirrors to shatter with stones scavenged from the driveway; uncharted waters that beckon intrepid paddlers to test the limits of their rubber boots.
Every time I coax my knees to bend and deliver me to toddler level, I realize that flowers are now at the perfect height to sniff. And if I throw caution completely to the wind and stretch out prone on the lawn, a bustling metropolis of insects comes into focus.
Somehow it’s easier to ignore pressing engagements and to-do lists down here. Suddenly, following a little brown toad to see where it makes its home seems a perfectly reasonable way to spend half an hour.
But the best thing at this height has to be the dusty perfume of sun-warmed hair pressed into my shoulder, the muddy hands clasped around my neck and the magic words, “Play with me some more Nana.”
I would hate to miss that because I was too tall to hear it.
(Nana to six, some of whom have grown tall too, but not too tall!)