I took some of the kids letter boxing on Tuesday. The results were mixed. We located our first box quickly and everyone was pumped to continue searching for more boxes. At the second box, we ran into some problems. It was a box that we had searched for previously and been unable to locate. I wrote to the owner of the box and he had heard that the box had been moved. We tried checking the new location, but to no avail.
At the third location, the younger two girls were no longer interested in walking, looking for boxes, or doing anything except eating lunch. The whining was terrible. Paige stopped, but Allie was in full voice for 80% of the search. The box had 6 different boxes to locate and put together to make one large design. As we set off on the path, Allie continued her refrain of "I'm starving." The mosquitoes began to bite as we walked down the path which has swamps on both sides. Joe and Madelyn discovered that there were black raspberries on each side of the path. The kids picked and ate raspberries and I tried to get them interested in following the directions. I told them to look for a cement and iron scrap. No one was interested in looking for the cement and iron thing. Joe begins pointing out squirrels instead of clues, Allie is now "hunnnnnnngggrrrrrryyyyy" and Paige wants a drink. Madelyn is commenting on the dreadful mosquitoes as we begin the return trip.
I locate one of the six boxes, just as Madelyn discovers snakes in the brush near the box.
My first thought is to run screaming down the trail to the car, but I decide to remain calm. So I begin to ask questions instead. "How long is the snake?" "What type of snake do you think that is?" "How many snakes are near the letterbox?" After commenting on the beautiful color of the snake, I manage to get the kids headed off to the van. Another day of letterboxing is over.
Was it an unqualified success? No!!! But, we will go again, just without Allie. Do they make snake repellent?