Thursday, February 12, 2009

What kids know and don't know

During this week of horrendous news, the Noodle has seen and heard plenty of things that are shocking and grievous. Grave news. He has heard discussions of the Ash Wednesday bushfires before, from his Granddad and from other relatives. It's clear, I think, that this upsets his Granddad.

The Noodle has asked in the last few days what we would do if there was a bushfire. We live close to the area that was burned here in Canberra in 2003, so it's a pertinent question. I told him that we'd leave early. He asked, of course this week, what would happen if we couldn't leave. So I told him what the CFA have always said, that we'd protect the house and wait until the fire front passed and try to keep the house safe if we could. And then to go outside if we couldn't. It sounded pretty hollow to me, but he seemed reassured. I suppose sometimes just thinking that the grownups know what they are doing is enough for a seven year old (even one of those question, question, question ones).

Even when I've been in the grip of very grim fears at different times in my life I've never worried about bushfires. I've been awfully horrified about being burned, but not of bushfires as such. I think I always believed my Dad (Noodle's Granddad) when he told me what to do. I think that even 37 year olds like to believe that the grownups know what they're talking about.

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