Fortunately, I was doing community visits in our city core and had some extra time before lunch to walk through our downtown park. When our daughters were little, I brought them here every Wednesday when the weather was decent. We would go to the market and then walk over to the park for a picnic lunch.
A creek runs through the park, divides around an island, forms a small lake and is crossed by several bridges. I remember the girls standing on the bridges to play Pooh Sticks.
The original Winnie the Pooh stories by A. A. Milne were very popular at our house and were great for stimulating imaginative play. The official 'Pooh Corner Rules for Playing Pooh Sticks' was written in 1996 by Mike Ridley to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the publication of 'Winnie-the-Pooh'. These important rules are copied below.
'The official Pooh Corner Rules for Playing Poohsticks'Getting Ready...
1. Find a Friend (The more friends-the more fun).
2. Find a Bridge over a stream (To find a bridge you may need a map)
3. Find some Sticks (You must do this before you arrive at the bridge).
4. Find a supply of Food. (Ask everyone to bring some along).
1. Select a stick and show it to your competitor and make sure you are clear which stick is whose.
2. Check which way the stream is flowing and face the stream upstream.
3. Choose someone to start the game, he is the Starter.
4. All competitors stand side by side facing 'upstream'.
5. Each one hold his/her stick at arms length over the stream.
6. Starter must call "Ready-Steady-Go!" and all competitors drop (and not throw) their sticks in the water simultaneously.
7. At this point all the players must cross to the downstream side of the stream
8. Look over the edge for the sticks to emerge.
9. The owner of the first stick to emerge from under the bridge is the winner!
I had no one to play Pooh Sticks with me today, in fact, the park had very few people about enjoying the nice day. Tonight I looked on the shelf and pulled out the A. A. Milne books and re-read the adventures of Pooh, Christopher Robin, Eeyore, Piglet, Rabbit, Tigger, Kanga and Roo for old times sake. The stories were written by a father for his son, Christopher Robin, but in truth I think A. A. Milne wrote them for himself.