an otterspool afternoon

After some failed plans to meet up with Zsofi, we went ahead and went to Otterspool yesterday to enjoy the warm afternoon. We started off at the playground, where Ares was interested in the structures, but didn’t want to play on anything in particular (“Do you want to go on the slide?” [headshake] “Do you want to go on the swing?” [headshake]). He seemed to just wander around the way toddlers do, trying out everything a little bit before moving on to the next thing and later returning. Raspberry played a bit but was more interested in the immature pine branches she found. She thought they looked like little dolls and tried to sell them for one pence, but no one really paid any attention to her, so she got quickly disheartened. She wanted me to pay actual money for it, but I didn’t have any change on me and honestly, I didn’t really want them in the first place.

Lucas finally fixed the wonky wheel of Raspberry’s scooter, so she brought it out for the first time in more than a year. She’d initially wanted to scoot down the promenade, but decided she wanted to go into the woods instead, as we did the promenade the last time we were at Otterspool. On our way to the woods, we discovered that they’d built a skatepark. How perfect was it that Raspberry had her scooter? And she’s always wanted to try out a skatepark. Needless to say, we didn’t make it to the woods.

Raspberry scooted among a couple of other little kids and a handful of adult skateboarders, delighting in the fact that she was going faster than she does on the sidewalk. She fell numerous times, sometimes picking herself up and carrying on, but mostly crying. I explained to her how it takes lots of practise and falling in order to become more proficient at scooting. An older skateboarder with yellow teeth commented how he was surprised she didn’t have pads on. I said that this was the first time she’s doing this in ages, and that we’d get some if she does it more. Her knees took the brunt of the falls and she cleaned them with wet tissue, rubbed some grass on it, and was good to go. Ares seemed to enjoy watching the action, while stuffing himself full of rice cakes. He kept wanting to walk on the skating surface, but he did wander off to chase a seagull at one point (no luck).

Near the end, Raspberry collided with a skateboarder, who landed on top of her. I didn’t see what actually happened, beyond them lying in a heap. She landed on her left elbow and was convinced that it was fractured (in recent weeks, she’s been learning all about the different kinds of fractures, as she’s really been wanting to climb trees and is convinced that she’ll fall and break something). Her elbow was touch-sensitive and she couldn’t bend it. She said it hurt so much that she couldn’t even cry (this is a kid who cries and says it hurts if you poke her). It wasn’t red or swollen, and it didn’t look much different from her other arm, so I was pretty sure it wasn’t broken. I tried to distract her by asking about all the different fractures and which one it might be, and said we’d see how it was when we got home and decide if we needed to go see the doctor. Despite being mostly certain her arm wasn’t fractured, I still had visions of her needing to be x-rayed and put in a cast, because my mind works in weird ways. As we walked, her left arm hung limply while she used her other hand to walk her scooter, but she wasn’t upset, like I thought she might be. While we were exiting Liverpool Central, she saw a table giving away free strawberries and drinks and as she reached out to take a cup, I noticed at that her hurt arm was bent. She said thereafter that it didn’t hurt as much anymore. Hooray to no fractures! As a reminder of her afternoon, she has scratched and bruised shins and a patchy, red scrape on her elbow that she’s rather proud of. I think she would’ve actually been excited to have broken a bone, but I’m guessing she’s glad to not have done so. I know I am.

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