Arriving home from work the other day, I was surprised to hear sounds coming from the back yard. While it is true that there has been a recent flurry of activity back there, losing the stand of eucalyptus trees in our neighbor's lot with its attendant buzz of chainsaws, this was something different. This was my son, shovel in hand, attacking the ground with a zeal he tends to reserve for more virtual experiences. Along with a younger friend from down the street, he was up near the fence, digging and pulling up the weeds that take over that section of our yard in the early spring.
"What'cha up to?" I called back to him.
"Gonna make a race track," he replied, leaning on the shovel and looking every bit the part of an Imagineer.
I smiled and waved. He waved back and then picked up his shovel and went back to work on that little plot of land. His land.
This wasn't the first project to spring up in that corner. He had once envisioned a monster truck rally course, back when his monster trucks were all built to that scale. Another time he spent a week planning and excavating a small stream that would eventually run down the hill and into a fountain that would recirculate, providing us will year-round babbling. This was the same chunk of earth that he and some of his teenaged friends had begun to dig up with dreams of building an underground bunker for surviving the coming zombie apocalypse, or the next Nerf War. It's his corner. Adjacent to the clubhouse his father built for/with him over the past decade, just up the path from where his beloved boa Larry is buried, this is his corner.
I don't expect that the race track will reach completion. Very little that gets planned for that corner does. It's where really cool ideas go when they have to be outside. I don't know how many more of these big ideas he will have before he finds a new place to dig and build, so I won't discourage him. It's where he goes to dream.