I’m back in the game baby!
Not only did I tick off my 9th list item today but (at least in my opinion) I did it in style.
One of my oldest friends, Dom, and I finally found the opportunity to get to the nearest swingset and get swinging! As previously planned, we made our way to the GIGANTIC swing at the ‘Constellation Playground’ on the Bay Run… and then proceeded to have the day of our late-twenties’ lives!
Normally, when I pass this playground I am huffing and puffing and wheezing my way towards that impossible half marathon goal. It is for this reason that I have never before appreciated the full awesomeness of this work of local council art.
To paint a picture for you, let me just say that, in addition to at least 3 swingsets (including the swing to end all swings), this place boasts a giant sandpit, giant slippery dips, spinning gadgets of all shapes and sizes, a spiderweb-inspired climbing contraption, and an impressive flying fox. In my last post about play equipment I recall lamenting the death of deathtrap playgrounds. I couldn’t have been more wrong!
This place is a veritable Wonderland of awesome things. So much so that we happily whiled away a few minutes on alternative forms of play equipment when we discovered that our primary target was already in full swing at the hands of a couple of rough-looking toddlers.
When we finally did get to the swing, it was with an exclamation of childlike joy that we jumped aboard and started swinging!
As far as feminism has taken us in our quest for equality, there is still one area where I feel women rule supreme – and that’s in a public playground. It might seem ridiculous, for example, that a (nearly) 30-year-old woman should be swinging around in a kiddie area… but at least it’s not creepy.
Speaking of creepy, later, when climbing on the the giant spiderweb, Dom and I tossed around the idea of taking over the playground, Phantom of the Opera-style, by donning various articles of “lost property” and hanging from the spiderweb, daring children to cross our paths (I think knee and elbow pads made from odd thongs, and a mask made from used bandaids were among the ideas. A little crazy perhaps, but they were definitely thoughts totally befitting a return to our ridiculous childlike ways).
With more than enough room for two people, we swung side-by side and swapped ghost stories that would make Robin Gibb turn in his grave. My favourite, of course, being the time Dom went on a ghost tour at Manly’s Quarantine Station. In the midst of the scariest part of the tour he was introduced to a mass grave for travellers who hadn’t quite made the distance. Unfortunately for Dom and his group, ghost tours don’t exactly bring home the big bucks, so at the same time a wedding was being held on the premises. The combined result was that, as he stood looking over the mass grave taking in its mysterious aura, he was also forced to listen to the inappropriately cheerful sound of the Bee Gees busting out ‘Stayin’ Alive!’
I nearly fell out of the swing laughing!
The best part about behaving like a child is that the feeling tends to stick with you, so as the afternoon progressed we were compelled to devour a couple of Paddle Pops.
And, just when you thought life couldn’t get any sweeter? This:
“YOU HAVE WON A FREE PADDLE POP”
I spent the rest of the afternoon covered in dirt, massaging my rope-burned hands and pondering the inexplicable cut on my right index finger.
In other words, I spent the rest of the afternoon in a state of pure bliss.
I cannot recommend enough a good reintroduction to your inner child. It helps that Dom and I tend to bring out the ridiculous in each other already, but it really doesn’t take much to feel young again… as long as you’re willing to behave in socially unacceptable ways.
Quite literally, I haven’t felt this young in years. I had an amazing day and I feel amazing for it. A big ‘Thank you’ to Dom for helping me appreciate the simple things in life!
What mischief did you get up to as a child and would you risk it again now?