I have something to get off my chest about playgrounds. You see, they bother me. Not because I don’t like them; I do. Very much, and the fact that there is a shiny, brand new one about to be opened at the end of my road is fabulous news for the community. But they bother me because some children just don’t seem to understand the rules of playground play.
Take, for example, the simple slide. Now, I might be very old fashioned and totally out of touch, but as far as I was aware slides are for coming down? Right? There is usually a set of steps or a rope ladder or some climbing device provided for the kids to make their way to the top of the slide. Right? So why, oh why, do some children insist on spoiling all the fun for everyone else and running back up the slide when there is clearly a queue of kids at the top waiting to come down?
This absolutely infuriates me. I’ve lost count of the number of times I have had to explain to someone else’s child – and usually a child of school-going age who clearly understands the technicalities of using a slide – that they are going to have to move out of the way or nobody else will be able to come down.
OK, I might be being a bit of a ‘control freak’ and I’m sure my own children have run up a slide on the odd occasion, but only when there is no one else around and certainly not when there is a whole gang of toddlers and pre-schoolers forming a small flash-mob at the top.
So, please, please, please parents, as we head into the longer evenings and warmer days and flock to the local playgrounds to enjoy the facilities, have a word and remind your children how to play properly. Apart from being dangerous for younger children, it just simply spoils everyone’s fun.