July 17, 2002 - Wednesday
I took the boys to a playground in the next town for our afternoon activity. It's a playground that I've taken Harry to just once before on a rather cold day. We didn't stay that long on that occasion and Harry probably didn't remember it. It was, however, a wooden playground with "church towers," something like the one near grandpa's house. When we arrived today another mother was there with her two children each about a year older than Harry and Jeremy respectively. Jeremy didn't much care about others, of course, but Harry was off playing with the slightly older boy within minutes. Then after a little while another mother came with a three and a half year old and a ten month old and that boy, too, after several minutes of solo play eventually joined the group with Harry and the other boy. Together the three took to throwing the pebbles that made up playground's ground cover down the various slides. It's a tenuous habit to let develop, but one I was not about to fight as I watched Jeremy and tried to keep him from placing other pebbles and sticks in his mouth.
The more interesting part of the trio of boys was that Harry, at two and a half to their three and a halves or older, was clearly the leader. I'm not sure how much of that had to do with the fact that he was clearly the most proficient verbally, but I'm not sure it would be that much. Both others had enough words to make a point if they wanted and each could have led the others around the playground finding slides to throw pebbles down. However, it was Harry who did. Harry's got confidence and determination, there's never been much question about that. The question is where did he get it from? Neither his mother nor I are natural leaders, if not both introverts. Maybe he's just young and innocent and will change as he learns more about the world. Hopefully not.