Monday, February 15, 2010

The Climbers

How was your Valentine's Day? Mine was really romantic, I went to an indoor rock climbing centre with 6 children, 3 other adults, 3 cars (our friends helped out with transport, couldn't squash all those kids into the Corolla) and some party food for afterwards, because we had a Climbing Party for the Climber. And friends. For the first time ever, I organised an "outing" type party for him, to make up for the fact that he rarely has school friends to his birthday parties owing to his birthday falling at the end of the long summer holidays.


The kids were all excellently well behaved and just generally lovely. They also were really good climbers. Even the more nervous among them were shinnying up those sheer rock-faces like Spiderman. It was quite amazing.


It's my opinion that there is actually a specific "Climbing Gene" which obviously runs strong in The Climber. There were 2 other party guests with monkey genes, so they and Climber soon graduated to the extra-extra-high walls and got themselves to the top, over and over again. But even the non-natural climbers were great, and I think surprised themselves with how much they could do. And being children none of them seemed to be at all sore and sorry the next day. It's good to be young.

rock climbing party 041

I wasn't sure how Cherub would go with it, initially he seemed to think it would only be a big boy activity but we told him it was for him too, and the next thing we knew he was scaling walls with enthusiasm and finesse, and pretty much commandeering Fixit for his own personal belaying use. So although he never climbed out of his cot till he was over 3, (Climber could get out at a very young age whilst wearing one of those sleeping sacks; very funny) it seems the Cherub has the Climbing DNA too.

rock climbing party 024

The other adults (one instructor, Fixit, the mum of a party guest and one friend of Fixit's) were The Belayers while I roamed free with the camera and the drinks. Fixit's good friend Mick is a keen climber himself, so asking him to come along and help was a very good decision. He was really good at all the rope-y stuff and even better at coaching the kids up. For example, the rope ladder, he just kept calling out Two hands up, two feet up. Hand, hand. Foot, foot. It was great.

(Three Fixits; Mister Fixit belaying Climber half way up an enormous wall, while Cherub climbs the rope ladder)

Climbing centres have very good safety procedures in place, although I'm pleased to report not one child fell off the wall. However, as we left the premises after food and cake, Cherub started to choke on a giant lolly snake. I now know why they're called Killer Pythons. But after a lot of back-slapping, attempted heimlichs and much coughing up of slimy blue gelatinous matter, Cherub survived to tell the tale.


  1. Sounds like great fun. I wish I could be that agile and have the upper body strength to do it.

    As for the snake - glad it is out!!!

  2. It sounds like a great day.
    I wish I'd had one of those walls. I had to make do with trees. The climbing gene must come from me.

  3. I must have the absolute opposite of the climbing gene.

  4. Gawd, look how HIGH he is in that last photo! And I am still only looking at Fixit! I can't bring myself to look at Cherub and Climber.

    I'm glad the snake didn't go to waste. I hope he still ate it.

    I love snakes. Of the jelly kind.

  5. I like the way he 'chose' to choke. Damn him and his sneaky ways! ;) I hope he chose to eat another one (or the same one, again).

  6. Bloody Australian snakes! I was explaining to someone just the the other day how dangerous they are.

  7. I would love to have a go at that... alas I'm sure to be over the age (and weight) limit.

    Snakes are deadly, no matter their form.

  8. Your boys look so very beautiful in your photos. I am, however, very glad that you did not take a photo of the remnants of the giant snake.

  9. I went climbing once and I must say I was fairly crap at it. Sounds like your boys did you proud though!

    I'm sorry about the choking incident ... those things always are so stressful. All's well that ends well, though, as you say - in the end it was Cherub 1 Snake 0 ;-)

    (BTW For my very romantic Valentine's Day we all went for a swim, I did some grocery shopping, and then I cooked homemade pizza for dinner. I was swooning I tell you)

  10. Sounds like a very satisfying male type Birthday bash!

  11. That looks like a lot of fun - and clearly the perfect Climber post-birthday outing. Except for than almost-killer snake. Vicious little bugger.

  12. Inspired! Inspired, I say! I reckon I have a kid with the requisite climber gene and I bet those kids came off those walls feeling as tall as a - well- rock face.

    PS. It wouldnt be a party without some spat out slimy, blue, gelatinous matter.

  13. 3 of mine seem to have the climbing gene. It's scary. The 14yo loves to go indoor climbing, I know it's safe but still...

  14. Ooh, that looks high. Shudder. Still, they look as if they're having fun!

  15. We're heading off to the CLIMBING party for the newly 13 year old tomorrow! He went for his 10th birthday too. It's such a great outing. I'm most excited about meeting a couple of the High School friends for the first time. We still have to organise one more car for transportation there. Mackie is allowed to have 9 friends this year on account of having had no parties for the past couple of years. He is not lucky with friends and also has an inconveniently early Feb birthday.
    I really want to bang on at length about the friends issue, but I won't. Glad Climber had a ball.


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