I love this picture and the quote.
For me, personally, though, this is a happy WISH, rather than an actual memory.
My mother didn’t like messes. She wouldn’t have provided the rain gear in this picture or countenanced me jumping into a puddle. My parents were both only children, strictly raised. They didn’t ‘forbid’ us to get dirty. They just couldn’t imagine it. Some things my brother and I ‘got’ without having to be told.
My best friend, Ann, down the street, played in the water. And, if some of it DID get on me, my friend’s mom would clean me up before I walked home. For several years I was at my friend’s house every day, and also routinely spent the night on weekends. We were inseparable and enjoyed countless hours of things my mom would have frowned upon – like finger painting, making chocolate chip cookies, and dressing up to play, “Children of Another Land.”
My friend’s house was always full. Ann had one sister and two brothers, and ALL of their friends felt the same way I did.
My wish is that every neighborhood have one shared ‘mom’ who delights in – and embraces – the many memory making joys of childhood.