I’ve backspaced over the first sentence a dozen times. I’ve got no idea what to say that won’t sound like an insane person gushing over his car and daughter. I’m just ever so proud, you guys. EVER. SO. PROUD!
My little girl got to ride in Sharka for the first time. And SHE LOVED IT!!!
First, a note to concerned parents. Harriet has been signed off by her pediatrician for forward-facing since age 12 months. She had enough weight and neck strength. I waited a long time after to take her out in Sharka. A LONG time. We’ve driven around town in Bucky a few times, she and I. But not Sharka. I donno why. I guess I was saving it. Saving the ride till the opportune moment. That came a few days after she turned 21 months.
She has a Recaro ProRIDE car seat. You should look it up. It’s a phenomenal car seat. The thing has excellent safety ratings and a great metal structure. It makes most of the ones you can buy in big-box stores feel like toys. And it just looks bad ass. But really, I don’t care so much how it looks. I care about safety, and she’s got it with this seat.
Anyways, onto the drive.
The weather was incredibly nice for July. Usually it’s just punishing and above 100. Last week, we were treated to low 80s in town and the mountains were even cooler, so it seemed the perfect time to take Harriet out in Sharka.
Just driving around town was fun for her. Taking off from lights brought cheers of “WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE” and “VROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM” and “SHARKA AWESOME! SHARKA AWESOME!!!!!!!!!” from her little lungs. I mean… you guys have no idea. My heart was FULL. I thought she liked going out in Bucky. That was nothing.
We drove and drove. We got about 3/4 of the way up the mountain and decided to stop to run around and explore. It was snack time and I didn’t want someone to get cranky and be prematurely soured to the Sharka experience.
We climbed and explored. She picked up sticks. I remembered doing that as a little one, something I’d not thought of for years. Then we sat on a bench and had snacks together. In the mountains. With Sharka.
Honestly, there was not one part she didn’t like. This girl was happy the whole drive. Almost as happy as her daddy.
Going up, we drove a little quick. Spirited? Not at all dangerous. Nothing that would even cause a seatbelt to lock. But Harriet was a little bit quiet going up. So, on the way down, I took it back a notch and mostly coasted. The curves are fun and plentiful enough that even taking them at the 30-40 mph is enjoyable. And that seemed to please Harriet. There were many more cheers, shrieks, and giggles.
We spotted a patch of mountain sunflowers on the way down. “SUNFLOWER!!!!” was repeated for the following 5 turns, so I took us back to pick them. I expected Harriet to spend a half hour choosing flowers. Nope. She grabbed one bunch and then SPRINTED back to Sharka.
There were corners to carve, dad!
Sometimes life is a downer. Sometimes I hang my head in my hands and wish something could be easier or some bill could disappear. There are nights I don’t sleep, but just work instead, trying to get on top of things.
And then there was the day that Harriet got her first Sharka ride.
The phrase “life is good” is horribly inadequate.