This is a photo of my backyard. I love my new backyard--it is the main reason I wanted this house. It reminds me of the Alemão, the ranch house we rented for three years in Brazil. It reminds me of growing up on three acres in Connecticut. It reminds me of all that is good about suburban living in the US.
It is the antithesis of my small walled stone-tiled backyard in São Paulo. Now there is no fence (okay my neighbor has a four-foot fence around her pool on one side but surely that is for legal reasons--and it's not electrified which is nice), no security....yet, it is the scariest place my kids have seen. Barely inside those woods is an evil.
What is it? Two words. Poison ivy. My kids are terrified of poison ivy. I have to admit that it is more than partially my fault as I yelled at them the first day to get back from those three-leaved evil plants. Now they are frightened of clover. I am terribly allergic to poison ivy and expect that my kids will be equally susceptible.
This should make me laugh. In Brazil, we were afraid of various things at the wild fazenda (ranch): poisonous spiders, poisonous snakes, the always-rumored jaguars, canine tick disease. Now we are afraid of plants, lyme disease and lawsuits.On the bright side, one of my sons found a tiny garter snake that he confused with a worm because it was so small and cute. Very few snakes in Brazil are cute, unless you see them through my sons' eyes and they clearly inhale too much white glue every day.
So we have an awesome backyard. Just don't go into the enticing woods. There is evil inside.