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I Have Eyes Everywhere

Saturday afternoon the girls and I were enjoying glorious spring weather playing outside on the street of our cul de sac. Maddie was zooming around on her bike while Cora scootered happily along, me admiring various tricks and occasionally pulling weeds from the front lawn.

After a while Maddie became restless and asked if she could bike by herself for a while. Now, I have never let Maddie go off for a bike ride before: she doesn’t even walk the half-mile to school alone. Mama’s not quite ready, I guess.

But I could see in her eyes her longing to stretch her legs, so I said, “Tell you what. You can ride the two blocks to the park, ride around the blacktop a few times, then come back, ok?”

Maddie’s eyes lit up.

“But here are the rules,” I warned. “First, you get off and walk your bike across every street, no exceptions. And second, you don’t get off your bike at the park at all – don’t go to the playground, don’t get off and chat with friends, nothing. Ok?”

Maddie agreed to the terms and she was off, flying down the street.

Two minutes later my husband came out the door, scratching his head. “Hey, honey? Your friend Tiffany called the house – she said she was at the park with your friend Cheryl and saw Maddie riding her bike unsupervised, and wanted to make sure we knew she was out. She tried to gesture Maddie over to talk but Maddie wouldn’t stop.”

I beamed. And told him yes, it was with my permission.

A few minutes later Maddie came flying back, grinning triumphantly from ear to ear. As we went inside, she said, “I saw two of my friends (the children of my own friends) at the park but you told me not to get off my bike so I didn’t stop to talk to them.”


We get inside and I sit down to check email, where I find a note from my OTHER friend at the park saying much the same thing Tiffany had said, but adding, “Maddie did a great job, getting off her bike at the crosswalk and everything,” but wanting to make sure the trip had been sanctioned.

I do love my girlfriends.

My little network will come in so handy when the girls begin dating.


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