Go Fly a Kite
No really, go to the store buy a kite, take your kid, and go fly a kite. We went to Fairprice today to get a few things for dinner and also to look for a gift for one of the children in our building complex. His birthday party is tomorrow and Emmet was invited. As we walked up and down the toy aisle I saw nothing I really wanted to get. He has a toy gun already. Legos, which are pricey enough back home, are very expensive here. So I despaired of finding anything in this store and resigned myself to going to the big toy store. I had tried avoiding that because well, if you’ve ever tried taking a child into a toy store and NOT buying anything for them you know why.
So we hauled the carriage around the corner to the next aisle getting ready to head to the food section and there hanging from the ceiling above us was inspiration. In fantastical brightly colored triangles, diamonds, tubes, and dragons were the kites. I thought that would be a great gift for a five year old boy. We found one with ninja bears and bright neon green patterns that was one of the tube shapes. A reel of string went in the cart beside it and I felt pretty good about my gift finding prowess. Until we started to walk away. I forgot the toy store rules because we weren’t in the toy store. Emmet couldn’t understand why we were getting his friend a kite but he wasn’t getting one. If he had thrown a tantrum about it, screamed, cried, or whatever I would have said no. But he looked at me with the earnestness that only a three year old can muster and said “ But daddy I want to fly kites with you too”, How do you say no to that? If you have an answer please tell me because I couldn’t.
He picked a large orange diamond with striped tails and a smiley face. I grabbed another roll of string, and we checked out and went home. We put away the groceries, packed the backpack with a bunch of water (it was a particularly hot day on the island), and then coated Emmet in sunscreen. He has a complexion a lot like his mother’s. Cream or lobster, very little middle ground. Smelling like a beach full of tourists back to the train station we went. One stop down the line from us is the Chinese Gardens. In addition to some beautiful statuary, that I really need to take some pictures of, there are two big fields. It abuts Jurong Lake so there is usually a decent breeze and today was no exception. A nice strong breeze blowing across our backs promised good things. Emmet ran around the wide open field as I unpacked the kite, popped its poles into place, and tied the string to the grommet. He looked so happy running through the grass that I almost forgot about flying the kite at all. But he didn’t, as soon as it was apparent I was all done his little face just lit up. “Is it time to fly my kite!?!” Of course it is buddy, especially when you ask me like that.
A few false starts and calm stretches soon turned into a steady breeze with an ever climbing kite in front of us. The sheer joy and wonder on Emmet’s face as he held the string and watched his kite fly was amazing. His curiosity when it pulled him a few stumbling steps was great. We flew that kite for almost two hours. When the wind would stop we would wrap up the string and start over. And the excitement never ebbed as the day went on. Soon enough the time in the sun was getting a little too much and I made the executive decision to go home. This blow was softened to Emmet with a a freeze pop. After two hours of kite flying in ninety degree heat a freeze pop was definitely in order……for both of us.
We will definitely go kite flying again. Wind and wonder are both renewable resources. And as much fun as he had, I may have had more fun watching him.