Dreaming up an Adventure
It was just before Jacob’s bedtime, and we had out his big illustrated children’s atlas that he loves flipping the pages of… looking at the animals, the food and the structures in all of faraway places of the word and unloading all the questions that his curious mind could think of. I had one as a kid that did so much to fuel my fascination for the world that has never worn off.
In a moment of spontaneity and realizing that I may not be able to keep the promise, I said “Pick a place Jackey, and I’ll take you there… just you and me!”
His eyes wide and a big grin on his face, he said “I want to go somewhere on a boat, Daddy!”
“OK, bud.” I attempted to temper his expectations a bit and steer him in a direction where this was possible as we flipped through the pages (for example, no matter how adventurous we were feeling, we were not going get on a boat to sail through the Suez canal, down the Persian Gulf and to Iran).
He flipped through the pages and found himself staring at the giant inland sea of Europe and Africa, the Mediterranean. “Is this an Ocean, Daddy?” He asked, fascinated by the birds and palm trees illustrated on the page protruding from North Africa and the twin giant volcanoes in Italy and Sicily.
His little finger landed on a large island off the west coast of Italy: Sardinia. “Let’s go here on a boat, daddy!” he shouted with a smile.
Well in a twist of fate, we already had planned on taking a boat to an island off of the Italian coast in a matter of weeks, so I chalked that one up as a win and said “You want to take a boat to an island off Italy?”
“Yes!” he said excitedly.
“OK,” I said. “Let’s do it!”
I explained to him that if we were to take a boat from Amsterdam it would have to be a bit shorter, as to take a boat to Italy would take days and he couldn’t spare the time off of school.
Details Taking Shape
A little disappointed, he said OK, but I showed him all the places within reach, pointing to the Norway, with its massive fjords jutting from the page, Copenhagen, with its famous “little mermaid” statue
pensively gazing out at the sea, or Britannia whose stunning castles were too numerous to put on the map.
As he went to bed he squealed with anticipation, excited for the “Daddy trip” and thinking of what boat we would go on and where it would take us. I thought of the poem that I had written him when he was just a few weeks old. That he was already living out the dream that we have had for him to show him this world. And so the next day we found a cruise. A short journey aboard DFDS cruise lines
to Newcastle, UK. Was it a week long sail to Sardinia? No. But it was a start, and there is much more life to live 🙂
These are your feet.
These feet cannot even support your weight to stand now.
These feet, in mere months, will have you walking around our house, exploring every corner and closet.
These feet, in mere years, will have you running around playgrounds, bruising your knees, getting to know this world.
Jacob, these feet will take you to beautiful places in this world; they will get you in trouble – Lord knows mine have.
They will break hearts. They will stay out too late. They will make Mommy and Daddy worried when we don’t know where they’ve gone. What potential these feet have to take you wherever you choose.
These feet will raise a family; they will take you to work when you’d rather sleep in.
They will take you on incredible adventures and broaden your horizons of this world.
Jacob, when I look at your tiny feet, I see your whole life ahead of you. What power is in those feet. What places they will go.
And my dear baby Jacob, I hope you always know, wherever those feet take you, they will always take you back to us.
Love, Mommy and Daddy
-From Daddy to Jacob. January, 2017.