As we’re getting ready to leave this place, I’m occasionally hit by waves of nostalgia. I had a moment tonight as I looked out over the landscape from our front stoop. Off and on while we were in this house, Sam and I would get to spend some time together just before we started the night time ritual where we’d “look at the darkness”. And we’d been doing it off-and-on even from the point of her early language development so it evolved from “I look ah dark?” to “looking at the darkness”. But it was a time that we both looked forward to.
It was a chance for some daddy-daughter time. I’d carry her out on to the front porch, put a leg up on the railing so that she could sit on it, and hold her warm to me. We’d talk about whatever – sometimes what she liked or didn’t like about the day, sometimes what we saw in the sky, sometimes observing a traffic light in Richmond and reciting the relevant lines from “Go Dog, Go” (“Stop dogs, stop. The light is red. Go dogs, go. It’s green ahead“).
I hope that we pick that up again in Brighton, looking over the English channel from the porch on our flat. But those days may already be gone. I know that now she likes playing Petville on her grandmother’s facebook account. And of course, she’s always in motion. And I know times change, and things are lost to childhood, but those are some precious moments I enjoyed as a dad. (Can you tell I listened to Puff the Magic Dragon [iTunes shuffle] today?)