Perhaps my favorite part of being in Tulum, Mexico with my 8-year-old son, Oliver, (on his first trip out of the country) was watching him become friends with two local boys. We stayed at a place I found on Airbnb that had several small thatch-roof huts on a fenced property. The yard had a wonderful garden, so it seemed like a private oasis with paths leading you to the outdoor kitchen, hammocks, or the trampoline. Despite a language barrier, the boys met and quickly were off doing what boys do – running around the garden, jumping on the trampoline, and wrestling.
On our last night, Oliver was adamant that he wanted to come back to our place at exactly 6:30 so that he could spend as much time as possible playing with his new friend who got home from music lessons at that time. I thought we’d spend our last night having a nice dinner, but that’s not an 8-year-old’s idea of fun. I conceded, and we headed back to our place at exactly 6:25. I didn’t see much of Oliver for the rest of the night–I’d hear occasional laughter or see the boys run by. When Oliver returned to our room at the end of the night, he had a rainbow loom ring and bracelet, one was in red, white, and blue, and the other in red, white, and green. The boys ended their night making friendship bracelets in the colors of their countries. Such a great remembrance of a sweet friendship.