Branches reach from tree to tree, as they form a leafy roof over my head. The sunlight shines overhead, fluttering through the leaves, casting a bright light over the brown, dirty ground. The climbing tree, here at my grandparents garden, with bright lush, edible leaves, gently flutter in the breeze. It reminds me of the old times when I used to climb with my Grandad and stick the sour leaves in my mouth, then clamber around like a monkey. I can smell the unhealthy KFC place down the road, mixed with the much nicer smell of homemade sandwiches. Bellbirds and blackbirds tweet and chirp high in the trees, taunting the cats hidden somewhere in the bushes.
The stream babbles and flies across the pebbles like me when I've had a 'sugar burst'. The old wood bridge that looked like it was about to fall from under me when I take one little step. The green swing is trembling in the light wind. There is the cold outside pond with a little spark of a fish with a white mask over his eyes darting around. I thought, how boring it must be to be a fish in that pond. We had gone through about 4 fish already, but they had either died, been caught by cats or swam away in the flood. This fish had lasted a while. It reminds me of the 2015 Arts Festival, when they based it on the Maori catching eels by getting them to come to the bank by waving a fire stick.
Grandad's big lory sits on the drive-way like a big lump of blue play-dough. If I looked hard enough I can see the other side of the Avenue through the trees, and the other property with whitewash fences and smart, modern houses, nothing like the old, rickety, warm house my Grandparents live in. I see some kids jumping on a trampoline. That house only has a few dark green trees, infested with spiders and other insects. I turn my head and look further down the avenue. I can see Papanui Road, cars crawling along the concrete like bugs with broken legs, the speed of snails, looking like big lumps of metal. Only a few drive down this avenue. It made me think: what is it like to live on such a busy road that you can hardly back out of your driveway?
I grumble when Mum and Dad say it's time to go home. Hmph. Just because Iris is cranky it doesn't mean I need to go. I say good-bye to the climbing tree one last time for today, then run along the pathway, over the bridge with the babbling stream, over the stony driveway, past the rose bed, and towards our stuffy, stinky car. I almost gag as I sit down into the car. It has been in the sun for a long time. Is there anything worse than being in a hot, stuffy car? But I know I will be back at Blair Avenue tomorrow.