Wednesday, July 15, 2009

My Radio Flyer Wagon

The Radio Flyer above is my favorite garden toy but I couldn't bribe Ham and Fancy, Lola's garden stroller and dirt digger to sit in the wagon for a photo op. A picture of a little old lady taking her schnauzer and pug for a ride in a bright red Radio Flyer wagon might just look hilarious enough for Digg. Maybe my humorless dogs have more sense still I don't think Antonio Pasin, the Italian immigrant and cabinet maker who created the first wooden wagon in 1917 would have mind. According to the company's web site, he created the Radio Flyer for children and named the first steel wagon after "his fascination with the invention of the radio by a fellow Italian Guliermo Marconi and flyer which reflected his wonderment of flight".

Apparently, he was also a master in keeping his inner child alive. Wonderment in my opinion is the perfect antidote for boredom. Childlike curiosity is fun and exiting. And intellectual curiosity about something really amazing is more than a power walk outside the proverbial box. Because curiosity when fully active, simultaneously creates another time and energy consuming creature called imagination which as we all know begets creativity. So instead of being bored and calling a pro to pave my driveway and patio, I decided to pave it with cement pavers.

I am simply impressed and fascinated by the simplicity and the durability of my Radio Flyer wagon. I bought it because the wheelbarrow is difficult for me to balance and push when it's loaded and heavy. The wagon doesn't put too much stress on my back and is much easier to pull with just one hand. I've used it to haul hundreds of cement pavers, retainers and bricks. It has been three years and still no problem whatsoever. No loose or lost screws. No flat tire. Not even a squeak. And it is light and portable enough to take to the TIEG Garden Expo and the Friends of Manito Botanical Garden plant sale in Spokane Washington; or anywhere a cart is not available. Having a Radio Flyer wagon is like having a friend who is much stronger than me. It is always ready and willing to help with the heavy work around the garden. It's almost a dream come true.

This is the Radio Flyer that inspired me to buy one. It is one of the many outdoor sculptures scattered throughout Spokane, Washington's Riverfront Park. It is made of steel reinforced concrete and was created in 1990 by Ken Spiering for the Centennial Celebration of Children. Funded by the Junior League of Spokane, the sculpture is 12 feet high, 12 feet wide and 27 feet long. It's big enough to carry 300 people. And the handle? You guess it. It's a slide.