Yesterday, three of our girls were auditioning for a new production of Joseph and His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat. The auditions were in York, but in an area, I was unfamiliar with. There all had different time slots so after the younger two were done we went home (a 27-ish mile journey) so Helen could go to work. Then we went back again for the last session!
This post is not, however, about how as a Dad I would drive these girls to the ends of the earth to give them a chance to realise their dreams. That, of course, is true, I would. No, this post is about something far simpler than that.
Despite my online presence, Instagram, Insta-stories, vlogging and all that I sometimes find it difficult to get out of my comfort zone. But yesterday I forced myself.
Once we had returned to York for Grace’s audition we had an hour to kill. It was gone 4.30 and in the UK on a Sunday that means retail parks et al are closed (or just about to). We were in an unfamiliar area of York (one I now know to be Tang Hall). I had sat-navved in and out only. But I couldn’t keep the other three girls in the car for an hour while we waited (despite me having a few films on my Amazon Kindle). No, I had to get them out in the sun.
Thanks to Google Maps I located a playground a couple of miles away. I hit Get Directions and off we went. Cemetary Road Playground didn’t sound the best and on initially driving past it I wasn’t sure. It looked, well, erm, a little dodgy. When did I become such a snob? No, I forced myself to turn the car around and park up.
I even park in a space I wasn’t sure was permit holder only! I was testing myself.
The small playground was fine. There was the usual variety of stand play equipment; swings, climbing frame, slide, see-saw, climbing wall. Some of it was a little past it’s best, but we had the place to ourselves and the sun was shining. Also, thanks to a family BBQ in an adjacent garden we had the tune of Minster FM drifted by.
I could so easily have not even bothered going to this park. On driving past I could easily have said: “sorry girls, I don’t think so”. I could have let them enjoy 5 minutes then made an excuse to leave. I did none of those things.
The eldest teenager aside, the young girls enjoy a great time letting their hair down and playing. The teenager did join in, a little. But we had a lovely 4 minutes just playing in this little playground in an area we didn’t know.
I realised that my comfort zone needed to change. So what if the area looked a little rough around the edges? The girls didn’t see that. They simply had some fun whilst we killed time waiting for their sister. It’s the simple things in life that matter.