Meandering Through a Muddle of Words
We spent yesterday wandering through a corn maze made in the shape of Noah Webster.
The challenge (in order to win a free small pumpkin) was to make your way through the maze finding the words in a giant word search, letter by letter. Amazingly enough we managed to make it through without having to call 911.
In the center of the maze (aka Webster’s face) was a second game where you had to select the correct definition of some words, and they weren’t easy.
This was the perfect maze for Sarah who has recently taken to looking up words in the dictionary and writing down their definitions, FOR FUN. Yes, friends, she is indeed my daughter, as I would underline (in light pencil) any words I didn’t know in any books I read and make a list throughout my childhood. The maze combined her new love of words with her never-ending search for adventure.
While the sun stayed behind the clouds for most of the day, it was still a nice day to be in the maze, compared to our adventure in a maze last year in Kansas, which included heat, bugs and two pre-teenage girls who decided that they needed to run through the maze. Of course, this late in the season the maze is a little worse for wear, with brown stalks and downed stalks, as well as evidence of Hurricane Irene who took her own journey through the maze.
As we wandered through the maze, my mind rambled from nothing to word meanings to the meaning of life with lots of side trips along the way.
As we journeyed through the maze, I learned that I have absolutely no sense of direction, while Sarah and Nathan seem to have an innate instinct for making their way through mazes.
Of course, upon this realization, since I always want to improve, I tried to hone my instincts and improve my navigation ability. My instincts started to kick in, and I eventually figured out a pattern that I could follow. However this inevitably led to the . . .
Brabble of the Babes
You see, Sarah and I tend to be a lot alike. This means that, on occasion, we get on each other’s nerves. Perhaps due to my lack of sleep over the past several days while I was dealing with my personal emotional roller coaster, or the fact that within 5 minutes of entering the maze Sarah nearly brained me with the flag, my ability to communicate with my daughter seemed to disintegrate rapidly as we made our way from letter to letter. What sounded to me like, “please don’t walk with the flag pointing forward” or “don’t swing the flag around, you might hit someone” must have sounded to her like “STOP TRYING TO KILL EVERYONE WITH THAT FLAG!!”
Sometimes, despite my love of words, I have problems communicating.
As my legs started getting more and more tired, my words became sharper, until I reverted to the inner 6-year-old that often makes appearances when the tension between us gets stronger and decided to stop talking.
Words only work if you use them.
Revelations of the Camera Obscura
Eventually we worked through our issues (aka, I stopped talking and we continued on) and found all the letters and words. We exited the maze in glory to select our pumpkin. Then, of course, Sarah wanted to explore a little. We wandered over to the petting zoo, where adorable goats and other animals demanded food which we did not provide. Then Sarah saw an odd structure that looked like a little play house. In reality, however, it was a Camera Obscura and it was really cool.
Somehow, looking at the world from a different perspective made me realize that I need to change my own perspective more often, in order to find some incredible things.
So what did I learn by changing my perspective? That there may not be enough words to describe the complexity of my love for my life (even at its most confused and chaotic) and especially for my family.
Sometime words just aren’t enough.