With spring’s arrival, we shed shoes and socks at our house. This brings great relief as there are never 4 (much less 8) clean socks to be found, and the search for them can consume every bit of ten minutes. Spring means no more sock hunting for me. Instead, four little bare feet now race into the day.
Bare feet ride on scooters down the sloped sidewalk, gaining speed along the way. As the scooter collides with a patch of grass adjacent to the road, they press hard into the ground, braking fiercely until friction works its magic. They stop and savor the ride for a second before they scoot back up the sidewalk, anticipating another wild ride.
Bare feet walk behind a bubble mower, right next to Daddy as he cuts the grass. They move with great pride in every direction across the half trimmed lawn. Eventually, they gallop toward Daddy and help push the real mower right beside him in perfect parallel lines. This slows the process significantly, but mostly, no one minds.
Bare feet race across the lawn and toward the chicken coop, delivering apple cores, melon rinds, and old lettuce to the hens. They bolt behind the coop and suddenly stand on tip toe so that eager eyes can peer into the egg boxes. They jump at the sight of an egg or two. Then grass crunches underfoot as their owner carries tomorrow’s breakfast in each hand.
Bare feet splash and romp and prance and stomp. They soak in a muddy puddle that was formed by curious boys wielding a water hose on a lazy afternoon. Pants come off; dirt wiggles under untrimmed toenails while mud splatters porcelain legs.
At the day’s end, four small feet hang over the edge of the sofa exposing adventures in filth and freedom. They are black and grass stained and stinky and caked with dirt. I know deep down that this is the mark of a day well spent. I corral the bare feet into the bathtub and douse them in soap and warm water. I scrub them clean, knowing that tomorrow, all my work will be undone.
For in the morning, bare feet will rise and reign again.