Yesterday, I heard David talking to Aisha:
“Let me look at you.”
“I want to see if you’re big enough.”
“What for?”
“Can you come on the boat with me? Can you do far, far walking?”

Aisha, 4yo, November 2009
As I came out to say goodbye, I caught Aisha unselfconsciously pirouetting in the front of the boat! She was very excited to be going on an adventure with Daddy and the boys.

And so, thoroughly covered with sunscreen and armed with a lifejacket and hat, Aisha rode with David when he took A + his two boys to North Stradbroke Island on the boat. We thought that Aisha would rise to the challenge with two older boys to encourage her to be brave, and she certainly didn’t act as “soft” as she would with me around!

They rode the boat over, splashed around in the water, conquered sand-dunes, trekked to the ocean side of the island and arrived back home shivering from the chill wind despite the sunny day. The boys thoroughly enjoyed themselves, and I think Aisha would definitely want to be included in any similar future adventures.

One unexpected happening was the attention Aisha received from the five-year-old boy who wanted to keep holding her hand (which she didn’t really like). I think the reality that boys like girls really hit David, and he told the five-year-old in a private moment, “Ladies are allowed to say ‘no’.” He also gave Aisha a lecture afterwards, explaining that boys like all girls, but girls only like one special boy.

Eek! In future I won’t be concerned about the boat-ride or Aisha keeping her hat on. Instead, I’ll be worrying about the attention she’ll be receiving from David’s other guests.

This must be the start of mothering girls, instead of just raising pre-schoolers.