Saturday is adventure day. 

Dad rises early, bustling around

up and down the house with morning business.  

Coffee, Cheerios, newspaper. 

He rouses the rest of us with a beloved relic from his Navy days. 

“REVELRY, REVELRY, all hands turn to! Mount your bunks! Uniform of the day is: khakis!” 

When that doesn’t work (because it never does), Mom uncovers us with gentle hands. 

Ponytail, jeans, my favorite old tee. 

I remind Grace to brush her teeth. 

Pretty soon we are all packed to go,

just-in-case ponchos and picnic lunch in tow. 

We pile into the minivan and hit the road.

I watch the scenery change as we slowly ascend.  

The road is familiar,

full of quiet cars maneuvering through narrow bends.  

The cityscape falls away and pine trees creep into view. 

No more buildings or bustling streets,

just the occasional cabin or discreet place to eat. 

Right when I start to get jittery, we stop

Out of the van, one, two, three, four

we all hop. 

We take a deep breath,

ready our gear,

camera, sunscreen and snacks safely packed.

And so the adventure begins.

I am the trailblazer, leader of the Expedition. 

Dad provides support, supplying water and nutrition.

We wind our way up,

occasionally pausing to peruse the pristine panorama. 

Finally, chests heaving, we arrive at the top. 

I grin at the sight of our majestic stop. 

The view is breathtaking

leaves colored by autumn, 

crisp blue sky above. 

A perfect little lake rests beside an aspen grove.

Here in the trees

and sweet mountain breeze

I am free.

Upon catching our breath we begin to explore.  

We tear off shoes and socks. 

Go wading in the lake and practice skipping rocks.

The day slips away as we wander through the wild. 

All too soon it’s time to go home.

We head back into civilization, back to reality.  

The serene mountain scene gives way to the city. 

In the hubbub of the suburbs, I am just another kid. 

But secretly I know I am a mountain trekking,

leaf collecting



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