No, readers, that is not the sound of me unwrapping yet another Lindor raspberry truffle. I don’t know where you would get that idea. But you are welcome to mail me some Lindor raspberry truffles. They ship surprisingly well.
Crinkle crinkle is the sound of me deliberately walking through the leaves that gather at the edge of the sidewalk all fall long.
It’s something I’ve been doing for, like, ever, something that I suppose I must have noticed, somewhere, in the very periphery of my brain, because now that I have caught myself in the habit, I can’t remember when it started. It’s not a decision I ever made, or some sort of master plan I thought through. It’s just my funny way of walking in the fall, the way that maximizes my step-to-leaf-crunch ratio. (I also don’t pick my feet up all the way as I find a little bit of shuffle helps trap the leaves under my shoes.)
This silliness of mine was pointed out to me, like many of my quirks*, by my year-and-a-half-old son. We were on a walk together, me on foot, him in his favorite conveyance, the all-terrain wagon his uncle gave him. I heard him behind me singing a song, which is not altogether usual, but this one had definitely lyrics, which is unusual because his vocabulary lacks the sort of parts of speech one normally finds in a song, unless you want to use “truck” as a transitive verb. It took about six blocks before I realized what he was singing about: “Crinkle crinkle.” The sound my footsteps and his wagon tires were making the first day we took a walk with autumn leaves on the ground.
In case it is not entirely obvious, this song struck me as devastatingly cute. Many things my son does do, which worries me. I hope I am not one of those mothers who watch their screaming tyrant-child throw toys and hit strangers and then exclaim about how expressive and honest these behaviors are. But it was also one of those increasingly frequent moments I’ve been having where I thought, “Oh, so THIS is why people have kids!”
This fall will be one I never forget, for various reasons, not least of all because this is the BLB’s first fall as a person. (No offense, son, but last fall you were still just a breastmilk processing machine, and not a very efficient one at that.) This year he is interested in pumpkins (“Ball!”) and hayrides (“Tractor!”) and the sound of leaves underfoot. This fall he wants to put on his Halloween costume every time he sees it (he will be a parrot unless the suit is worn to shreds by then) and quack because he thinks it is a duck. This fall I am having fun.
I know, I know. Parenthood is not supposed to be fun. I’ve read plenty of books telling me how I am doing it wrong or how everyone else is doing it wrong so I know this is Very Serious Business.
But I am sneaking a little fun in, even if it’s just a short wagon walk down the edge of the sidewalk, where the crinkly leaves are deepest.
*Like wanting to sit down when I eat a meal and requiring more than 3 consecutive hours of sleep per day.