Children see things so differently, even trees! 300 words, for Woe's of Parenting
My mother came across an old swing set slide for my three-year-old son. Though in good shape overall, it was a bit wobbly without the rest of its original structure. True to our redneck heritage, we chained it to a pecan tree for stability. (Now that's some fine parenting!) Pecan trees, known as "trash trees", shed branches like cats shed fur. Because of the lost branches, most have knobs and odd protrusions. (Remember this. This tale is limited to three hundred words . . . I wouldn't waste them by giving a lesson in Dendrology for nothing.)
Ah, the "Grand Opening" of the tree-slide commences. My boy, thrilled to have a slide, whips up and down the thing like a greased weasel. On the fourteenth trip, or there about, he stands perched at the top laughing. Oooh, we are so good, we think, patting ourselves on the back. He starts screaming excitedly, hugging the tree and laughing. "Look, buddies, look. It's momma tree. It's like Momma! C'mon!"
Standing on the opposite side of the trunk, we have no idea what he's hollering about. Having walked over to see, it hits us. Still standing atop the slide, he's mock nursing one nub and using his hand to fiddle with the twin beside it. "It's got boobies! It's a momma tree!" he explained. We nearly keeled over.
A week or so later, because the little ham kept getting laughs, we relocated the slide to another tree a few feet away. Fools that we are, we didn't carefully inspect it. (Who said lightning doesn't strike twice?!) This time he's only one rung up the ladder before he collapses to the ground in laughter, pointing up at the trunk. "Look, ya'll. It's a daddy tree."
Oh, what I wouldn't give for a few decent cherry trees . . .