CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- From the time I said yes to my daughter's question on Friday evening to right about dark on Monday night, I must've questioned my sanity a few dozen times.
She's a sly one, that girl of mine. Timed things just right.
She knew I'd just finished cleaning out a little storage building we have in our yard, knew that while I'd put much in the trash, some heavier things had been dragged to a nearby spot in our yard.
Classier folk have a chiminea or an outside fireplace or a stone fire pit, and while burn barrels don't hold the same status, they do have a bit of hoboesque charm. In Fullerville, ours is called That Place Where The Grass Won't Grow.
And That Place was rather heavily populated when Celeste asked if, when we burned it, she could throw her school papers from the past year in the fire. She added some bit about what a perfect way it would be to finish off the school year and celebrate the end of middle school.
"What a cool idea," I said. "Sure."
"Can I maybe invite Katie and Melon over to burn their stuff too?" she asked.
"Don't see why not," I said.
Suave negotiator that she is, she allowed that to settle a day or two before telling me how excited her friends were about the idea.
"We should make it a tradition," she said.
I'm a big fan of traditions. This, my wily girl knows. I was putty in her frighteningly capable hands.