Tuesday, August 14, 2007

A Grandmother's Word of Warning

I'm going to have to write our "moving son back to college" story in several parts (to bore you all the longer), but first I want to issue a word of warning to all parents. We stayed in our motor home at a lovely park near the Atlantic Ocean....during the weekend, there were lots of campers (as we were busily moving furniture, buying needed things, etc. all in the blazing heat....but on Monday when we got up, the park was almost empty, with just a few stragglers left. Monday evening, I was out walking our dogs and a darling little girl rode up on her bike. She had all the safety equipment and had her helmet on, so obviously somebody cares. She stopped and asked if she could pet the "puppies" and I said sure. In 2 minutes, I knew her name was L, she is from Pennsylvania, her parents are divorced and she and her mother live with her grandparents, she was here at the park with the grandparents, you get the picture. She gave me so much information in such a short time that I was thinking info overload...then she said, "you have a kid? I'm looking for a friend." I asked her age (now this was the ONLY question I asked, the rest of the info was for free), and she said 9. I said no, I only have a big kid. She proceeded to tell me that she was going to put her bike up and she would be right back to play with my dogs.

I walked back to our place thinking that if I was a (fill in the blank) bad person, I could have just asked her to come on in and play and taken right off with her. PLEASE, PLEASE somehow without just scaring our children to death, we have to help them know that everyone they meet isn't a sweet grandmother....that there are bad people out there....and for heaven's sake, in a strange place, don't let you child wander alone. As you can see from the picture, the park was heavily wooded and you can't see into the motor home. It just sent chills up my spine to think what could happen to children who are so innocent and just looking for a playmate. She was not in the least afraid to talk to me, get near or even to talk about coming back! I walked on and didn't see her again, but as a grandmother, it really made me think! I hope it makes you think too!

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