The three of us opened and examined the contents of every single drawer in the cabinet. There were push toys. There were wind-up toys. From one, she pulled a whale's tooth. From another, I pulled New Year's Eve noise makers. Channing discovered a tiny plastic bowling set complete with ball and pins. There was a super ball drawer and a lady bug drawer and a bunny drawer and...and...and...Better than the treasures were the stories of how they were acquired, stories that led us off on this tangent or that tangent, right through two cups of hot tea and several tender, chewy peanut butter cookies that had just a spot of brown sugar on top for good measure.
Delightful. Every minute of our visit was utterly delightful. We explored the grown-up version of the treasure cabinet. It's nooks and crannies filled with items too precious for little fingers. Channing paused, if only briefly, at the child's desk to quickly color art for Maxine's refrigerator. It continued until we were politely shooed out the door but not before a kazoo parade led us in and out of every room in the house. Maxine had pickles to make with another friend. Channing's bed was calling him home for nap time.
Channing had declared the road to Maxine's adventurous on our drive in. It is gravel and winds through the forest. The second the sound of the tires changed from their usual suburban pavement hum to the crunch of rock, Channing had asked, 'What IS this?' To which he replied, 'I know. It's an adventure!' without waiting for my answer.
Maxine allowed Channing to pocket the green, plastic kazoo from the parade. He was overjoyed to have a treasure to keep and to take home. Once buckled into the car, he first asked if we were adventuring all the way home to his new house. The answer to that was yes. Over the gravel road we traveled, winding down the country lane amid the trees with their already changing leaves. Per Channing's request, I sang Happy Birthday to Baby Sophie. He hum-rattled along on his much prized kazoo.