A few weekends ago Arlo and I were able to attend a performance of Room on the Broom at Saint Mary’s College.

When we pulled up on campus I saw we had two things; we had some time before the show started and we had a little ways to walk to get from the parking lot to the building our show was in. I decided to make this an opportunity for a little adventure play.

I started by pointing to the building we needed to get to and letting Arlo decide how we would get there. Definitely wasn’t the most direct route, but he was engaged in a lot of decision making. I then side-stepped a few feet in an attempt to demonstrate we didn’t have to walk on the paved path, to my delight it wasn’t more than a few steps before Arlo was right behind me following my footprints in the snow.

I was walking backwards to observe and snap this photo

When we arrived at the building we were targeting we discovered a courtyard with steps leading down to it; because we were in the mindset of “Room on the Broom” Arlo decided this was where the dragons lived. I encouraged him to wander down and explore a little.

After deciding we had explored enough we started back up the stairs. Halfway up the snowy stairs Arlo turned and sat down, squarely on a snowy step, to finish telling me a story about the dragons.

We then walked inside the auditorium. To our surprise all the lights were off and no one was there. Another great opportunity to explore… 
We quietly walked down the aisle to the empty stage and up the stairs to stand where few people have the opportunity. I stepped back to take a photo and Arlo, glancing around taking it all in looked at me and said, “Dad, we’re not ‘possed to be here!” With that I scooped him up and said, “You’re right buddy, let’s go” and we ran back up the aisle and out into daylight.

Knowing that the building had two theaters we carried on searching for another door. The next thing we came to was a retaining wall by the freight entrance; rather than walking around it I asked Arlo if he’d rather climb over it or walk around, he chose over.

We made our way into the auditorium just minutes before the show started but were able to snag an aisle seat in the second row, yippee!

After the show, again knowing we had a little time to spare, I continued the open-ended exploring. We wandered the halls, stumbled upon the men’s dressing room while looking for a bathroom (and got to meet one of the actors from the show), and finally made our way back to the auditorium to see them taking down the last of the set. If find it fascinating watching Arlo watch and learn so much.

Still taking our time, Arlo scooted down the main entrance steps on his booty and we embarked on our walk back to the car, taking a few breaks for a classic snowball fight or two!

This kid’s got quite a throwing arm!

Weekends like these are what I live for and I’m so happy I have the opportunity to spend them with this boy.

“Grow old as slowly as you can, but gather wisdom as quickly as you can”

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