In the decade since Mr. Bill came into our lives, I have come to learn his patterns. He loves early mornings and naps every afternoon after lunch. He is happiest when working on a project, preferably when he is juggling many simultaneously. He is outside nearly nonstop during the spring, summer and fall but tends to retreat and become depressed during the winter. The heat doesn't seem to bother him, yet he suffers with pain when the weather turns cold.
During the cold months we try to buoy his spirits by sending over care packages, dropping in frequently to visit, and checking on him regularly. Robby and Mr. Bill tend to spend their time talking and planning rather than working on a project. Despite our efforts, Mr. Bill still seems to struggle during the winter.
I'm optimistic that this year may be different. Although we can't do anything to prevent cold temperatures and snow, Robby may have unintentionally stumbled onto the perfect winter project. He drew a blueprint for a boat the other day when he was at school, and he couldn't wait to get home to show Mr. Bill. After patiently listening to my eager little builder's ideas, the pair hatched a plan. They decided that they would visit the local hobby shop after Christmas and purchase a model kit for a remote control boat. They are going to build it together over the winter and launch it in the lake in the spring.
Both of their faces were glowing when they conveyed their plans. Robby hasn't stopped talking about going to the hobby shop with Mr. Bill and building a boat. Mr. Bill has been looking online at different model kits and has already cleared a work space in his den for the project. I think that building the model together might be the perfect solution for both friends!