Lovers’ Walk out by Newtown Wood here in Tramore is a place where voices echo because of the overhanging trees ~ trees that touch in the middle of the road like lovers holding hands.
Yesterday, there was a young couple out there with two children. The father was pushing a buggy in which I caught a glimpse of a baby with a pink bonnet. The mother was walking at pace trying to keep up with a little boy of three, at most, who was talking excitedly about a dog that was barking somewhere deep in the wood.
I had just passed them and was getting into my car when one of those unforgettable moments unfolded. Both parents could obviously see that the little boy was bursting to go down the wood and just as they started to decide what they were going to do, I saw the father and son meet each other’s gaze out of sight of the mother and baby sister. The father signalled to the little guy in blue shorts to go on down the wood and then got further into negotiation with the mother about the detour.
‘Oh, we’ll just go down to the little bridge,’ he said with as much excitement in his voice as was on the boy’s face.
‘ Okay, but don’t stay down there too long, not like the last time.’ replied the mother as there was a quick exchange in which she took buggy with the crying baby and handed him the little boy’s tiny scooter.
The baby’s crying stopped as mother and daughter walked on with the mother talking animatedly about the now rustling of the still invisible dog.
Father and son ran together down the wood, laughing and talking about throwing sticks from the bridge into the little stream that meets the sea at the bottom of the wood.
Every instinct told me that the father, just like me, had happy, happy memories of his own childhood days watching the stream carry the twigs under the bridge to start a whole new journey.