Kingdom of Fife


Robin’s affection for his Grandpa and Grandma during our stay with them was deeply touching. Soon after arriving, he asked Grandpa to bend down, and then kissed him when his face came close. He pulled up his shirt to have his tummy tickled with Grandpa’s beard. He ran up to both grandparents to give them hugs and told Grandma she was the best grandma in the world. He sobbed when we drove away.


Gabe was put out that Robin would be joining us for a game of football on the East Sands. With Gabe’s running impeded by a chest cough, Robin ran to fetch balls thumped across the sand. He passed and shot at Gabe’s prompting. For almost an hour we shared the simple pleasures of kicking, dribbling and running after a ball on damp sand. Gabe told me, by way of apology for his initial ill-temper: “I never knew I could have so much fun with Robin.”


While the males played footie, Eliza immersed herself in beach art. Using a child’s plastic rake, she gently brushed and coaxed the sand into a large, lop-sided heart, beside which, in italic lettering she wrote ‘mummy’.

After nearly an hour on the beach, I lead the kids to the playground. Soon they had invented games for the hammock swing and rope roundabout, which unleashed an unselfconscious noise of shouts, giggles and whoops. The other families around the playground looked away from their kids to watch mine.


One response to this post.

  1. […] him laugh: people falling over, running around after a football, wrestling, Gabe’s jokes, Grandpa’s beard. What makes him laugh most, and most reliably, are real, pretend or imagined […]


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