Scary stories from a lovely place
The last two mornings we have enjoyed watching the moon set. It sits in the sky like a hard boiled egg, lingering, teasing us with its smooth, silver orb in the greying morning sky. And then, seemingly just when I have blinked or looked away to wipe a nose or serve some toast, it is gone. It sneaks down below the trees of the Illawarra escarpment and rests for another day, or month.
We love the moon in this house. Silas has become addicted to it through the ‘Hey, diddle, diddle’ rhyme. I think the thought of a cow jumping over the moon fascinates him as much as it makes the little dog laugh. We have Playschool to thank for this introduction. ‘Hey, diddle, diddle’ appears in various forms in some of their episodes. If Silas gets his hands on a toy cow, zebra, horse, car, or just a fistful of air, he performs the jump movement with his hand and lets out a guttural ‘mooooo’ which could be moon, or what a cow says.
On a recent trip to the Op-Shop we managed to score a little cardboard book of ‘Hey, diddle, diddle’. It’s now very well worn, particularly the page with the cow jumping over the moon. Once we were at the park and Silas was crying in a swing while I was trying to arrange our getaway. (A lady told me as I rushed past her, “poor thing, she’s tired”.) Through what seemed like rivers of tears Silas kept saying “cow, moo. Cow, moo. Cow moo.” But I misinterpreted this as him wanting more corn, as in the wafer corn biscuits that he was previously eating. Only when I saw ‘Hey, diddle, diddle’ did I realise what he needed. Rather than falling asleep on the way home Silas read the book and did the cow jumping over the moon movement over and over again.
Oisín is into the moon now too and keeps going to the window that we watched it from this morning, pointing and chanting a word that sounds kind of like a combination of moon and more. My sons may yet defy their father’s architectural background and instead become dairy farmers or astronomers, although they’ll need to work on their diction.