Years ago I was invited to coffee with a new lady to our village. She showed me round her new house and in each room told me what improvements they planned to make. We ended up in the kitchen, she threw open the door and said, ”this is my favourite room, isn’t it great!”. It was a big room and one whole wall was covered by a wallpaper picture of a Swiss lake complete with snow capped mountains. I agreed with her that it was a lovely room and then, dear reader, I said, “it will be even better when you get that ghastly picture off the wall. Yes, you know what I am going to say, she looked very hurt and explained that she had spent all of the last weekend putting it up! Argh!
My point is that no two people every think exactly alike. We can never know exactly what is going on in another persons’ head and this is what makes watching a new human being grow and change so incredibly fascinating. Little Cassie has begun imaginative play. Last week she was playing on her little car, tooting the horn and grinning at her gramps when all of a sudden she blew the horn, cupped both her hands (around the sound?) and brought them over to give to Gramps. She did this several times and to her it was perfectly clear what she was doing whilst we sat and watched in open-mouthed amazement. What was going on in that dear little head?
Years ago whilst walking in the country with our four year old son I saw a pretty cottage which was for sale. “Wouldn’t it be lovely to live in that little house,” I said. “yes,” her replied tentatively, “but how would we get it home?”
It seems that not only do small children have entirely their own way of looking at things but their confidence in their imagined objects, play, and games, is as concrete to them as all the other things they have learned recently, walking, waving goodbye, drinking from a cup etc. And it is a wonder to behold.
They seem to have an innate understanding of basic physics, Cassie lifts her feet high and sticks her little pudgy legs out straight when mad granny pushes her round the room on her little car at great speed, and closes her eyes tight when something flicks towards her face, and yet they seem to be able to see things which are not there as well, the imaginary cup of tea or the sound from the little car horn…
I am glad we cannot see what is inside their little heads because watching them in their own little world is a wonder and a delight, a world we, as adults, have lost and are barred from.