It was especially cool to introduce our young nephew to Sammy (pictured) and Maggie, our horses. He was fascinated -- riveted, even, while watching Vera ride.
Such was one of several highlights of a weekend that included playing lots of War, flying kites, playing putt-putt on the back deck, goofing around in the riding arena (a.k.a. the world’s largest sandbox), sitting on the tractor, playing with the barn cats, playing in the creek, enjoying “the best spaghetti ever,” and lying on our backs outside to look at the stars.
My nephew has his own iPhone, and we actually played War on an app that lets two players play via connected devices. He’d run into the next room while we played, and cried out either with glee when winning or with consernation when losing.
“I looove kings, Unca Martin,” he declared during a post-game analysis of our play. Then after thinking for a moment, he had an addendum to add.
“But I love aces better.”
Kid’s got starting hand selection down. Needs to learn more about handling variance, though.
At one point my nephew got caught up in one of those cycles into which five-year-olds sometimes successfully trap older relatives, asking a series of addition questions that proved difficult to avoid answering.
“What’s one plus one?” he’d ask. “Two,” I’d say. “What’s two plus two?” “Four.” “What’s four plus four?”
And so on. That sequence would end shortly thereafter, only to be followed by another.
“What’s one hundred plus one hundred?” he’d ask, eyes wide. "Two hundred,” I’d say. “What’s one hundred plus one hundred plus one hundred?” he’d counter. “Three hundred.” “What’s one hundred plus one hundred plus one hundred plus one hundred?”
And so on. We’d get up to about 1,600 before we both would lose track. Then a half-hour later -- just when I thought he’d finally dropped the subject altogether -- he’d circle back around to his earlier line of questioning.
“What’s one hundred plus one hundred?”
Speaking of precocious youngsters -- and things that go on and on and count into the many hundreds -- the blog turns eight years old today. Actually I remember a couple of years ago someone telling me that “six is like a hundred in blog years,” so it’s probably better to think of Hard-Boiled Poker as by now more senior citizen than elementary schooler.
While other projects -- the management of the farm being one -- have begun to crowd in on my time, I’m still motivated to continue this sucker. I see my nephew doggedly continue with something well beyond what seems an appropriate length of time for a given pursuit, and can’t help but think we’ve got something in common.
So I’ll keep on running, and thus keep this thing flying. Thanks again, everyone, for looking in.