We’ve been taking care of some friends’ chickens and dogs and cats while they’re on vacation. The chicken coop is attached to a fenced yard, and in the evening I have to close the door and brace a piece of wood against it, because it doesn’t latch from the inside. Then I have to climb over the fence. Their children usually do this work. I am heavier than a child. You can guess the rest of that story.
This morning I took Caleb with me. I’m learning that wherever I go, I need to try to take at least one child along. Sometimes one is best, because then he has you all to himself. Caleb gathered the eggs while I fed the creatures. He chattered about the things that are important to an eight year-old. I listened and talked back like these are the most important things in the world. Maybe they are.
Later, as I was dressing for work, Caleb came to my bedroom and told me there was a present waiting for me on the kitchen counter, but that I couldn’t open it until I got in my truck.
In the truck I unwrapped the paper towel that served as wrapping paper. Inside was a floppy little piece of under-cooked cinnamon toast. The butter was smeared unevenly, clumping at one end and absent from the other. The cinnamon sugar huddled in the middle of the bread for fear of falling off. By any epicurean standard this was a pretty pathetic piece of cinnamon toast.
It was also the best piece of toast I’ve ever had.