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Smithology: Homebound from the lost and found
I have two children. Little girls, ages five and seven. My sister, a charming, 35-year-old psychopath named Sarah, likes to come to my house and throw cards at them.
The first time this happened, I charted the pattern: The kids walked into the room. Sarah, playing solitaire on the coffee table, arched her eyebrows. She waved the kids over. They took the bait, because they are five and seven. You take a lot of bait at five and seven ...
When my 2 kids were young, a long time ago (before cell phones), we used to play a driving game. After we had gone somewhere (anywhere), I would tell the kids that it was their job to get us home and that they had to tell me where to go, when to turn, etc. At ages of under ten, they gladly played along, telling Dad when to turn, etc and I dutifully followed their directions, much to my wife's consternation. It made for great fun, perhaps more for me than anyone else, but we inevitably got to see some neighborhoods and countryside that we wouldn't have ventured into otherwise. BTW, we never made it home under their direction, and after a couple of hours of wandering (and my wife's pleading to "let's just go home now"), I would end the game and head to the house. I don't think people would do that now, mostly because devoting a couple of hours to nonsense just isn't acting responsible anymore. It's a shame!
I'm glad to see that Sam is still a free spirit. Maybe next time he could take the kids with him and share the adventure.