It started innocently enough with a, “Papa, do you have any fancy cart moves?”
Pushing Rowan, my Granddaughter, along on the six wheeled lumber cart, I replied, “I’ve got awesome cart moves.”
“Can you show me?” the three-year-old begged as we locked eyes.
“Hold on!” I ordered and zigged the cart to the left and then zagged it to the right.
“That’s a pretty good move!” she squealed, “got any more?”
“How about a spin?”
“Do it again, Papa! I love to be dizzy.”
And on we went with fancy cart moves, laugh together, alone in the lumberyard’s wide aisle.
This game went on for years–virtually every time she visited a store with me that had “a big cart” we played the cart moves game. Only a few things could keep us from playing–too many other shoppers in our way, there was no available cart, or we were in too much of a hurry. And none of those things were definite game-stoppers. Sometimes we made “tiny secret cart moves” if the store was crowded, or we used a regular shopping cart if we couldn’t lay hands on a big one, or we decided to be late for whatever was limiting our play time.
But definite game-stoppers do exist. A year ago, Rowan moved 4.5 hours away, and she’s getting older. I’m not sure she’ll have any interest in the game the next time we have an opportunity to play. There’s a good chance we’ll never play the cart moves game together again.
And that’s OK–time marches on and kids outgrow certain games and types of play.
Maybe someday I’ll have a great granddaughter to play the game with on some high-tech hover-cart.