My mum brought me a toy every time she went shopping.
I waited patiently at home until I heard the car on the driveway, the key in the door.
I had learnt quickly enough to keep out of her way, to let her bring the shopping in first.
She always had to unpack the shopping and I waited, the suspense unbearable as the gift was so close but not yet to hand.
Then Mum had to make her cup of tea, tell Dad about the bustle of town, whom she’d met, what hadn’t been in stock, you know the kind of thing.
And all the time I waited until she called me into the kitchen.
And then I would wander nonchalantly, as if not having a care, busy engaged with other things but we both knew I wanted my toy.
On Saturday she brought me a shiny car, with four white wheels, a white steering wheel and decorated in the most wonderful colours. Wow did it go!
On Sunday it was a boat, skimming through the water as I bravely sought out pirates and the like and islands full of treasure.
On Monday it was a tank, and I fought in the dirtiest, toughest battles the world had ever seen bringing freedom and joy to those in need.
On Tuesday it was a submarine as I explored the depths of the ocean, watching out for sharks and discovering coral reefs.
On Wednesday it was a spaceship. Take off from the launch pad and I cruised and explored the stars – and even landed on the moon.
On Thursday it was a float and I made my delivery rounds to all who needed their milk and bread and vegetables.
By Friday it was a stock car and I raced and won on every track, careering and crashing my way to the podium.
A toy could never last a week with me, what with all the fun and adventure and exploring there was to be done. Sometimes journeys so perilous meant it only made a few days.
But then it was Saturday again and Mum had been shopping.
And I waited patiently for the car on the driveway and the key in the door.
And I waited patiently whilst she unpacked the shopping and made her cup of tea.
And I listened sympathetically to the chitter-chatter of events that had unfolded that morning.
And then she called me in and there it was, my favourite toy – the cardboard box. And my adventures began again.
© Mark Davoren 2017