“What are you doing?”
“I’m trying to reach the clouds.”
The Big Fella is standing on the top step of one of those little portable step ladders. He’s carried it about five metres from under the deck and up the three stairs leading to a paved area in the backyard. He’s a three-year old on a mission.
He smiles when I ask him, and looks up at the sky. He reaches up with one hard and stands on the tips of his toes.
I explain that the ladder isn’t tall enough to reach the clouds. The Complicated One (age 5) helpfully suggests we get the long ladder out. I explain that we need an aeroplane to reach the clouds – not even a hot air balloon would do the trick. Even then we couldn’t really get out of the plane and touch the clouds.
The Big Fella looks back up at the sky. He still thinks he’s in with a chance.
I think of Joni Mitchell wistfully singing ‘Both Sides Now’ and hope that one day he does touch the clouds.