My son and his best friend, both 7, disappear in our unfinished basement for hours. There they have built an elaborate web of mazes made from packing boxes, beer coolers and large plastic containers. This hideout sits upon a wooden platform used to keep boxes dry when we were experiencing problems with flooding.
This hideout is called “The Triffin.” No, I don’t know how they happened upon the name, but they liked the sound of it and it stuck. Now both families refer to “The Triffin” as if it’s a common, everyday word.
This isn’t your basic chairs and sheets club house. Two boys spend every weekend since the summer to add and tweak. They let their creativity and imagination run wild. The Triffin has several floors and compartments and each weekend yields a new surprise.
There are flashlights, blankets and games inside the Triffin. There is a mailbox and an old discarded comfy chair. There’s even a small ladder leading to another “floor.” The Triffin probably wouldn’t pass a building inspection but it’s been parent-approved for safety.
Every now and then the boys will completely dismantle The Triffin and rebuild with a new design. They’ll spend days with a notebook planning rooms and making adjustments.
The Triffin is my inspiration. It takes me back to my childhood when there were no video games or cable television. It reminds me of building hideouts in my own basement and writing stories under a blanket using a flashlight for light. It’s a good reminder to let our imaginations get the best of us once in a while. Sometimes we need to not be such sticklers and see where our creativity takes us.
When was the last time you totally let go?