As I write this post, I can hear the sound of children playing outside my window.
They shout and yell and laugh. They make rules and break them. Small victories are celebrated by slapping their friends enthusiastically on their backs, and whooping loudly. While slights, real or imagined, see them take sides on behalf of the misunderstood aggressor or the aggrieved victim.
The games leave them dusty, yet the sweat washes their hearts clean, teaching them about fair play and the importance of giving the game your all.
English doesn’t have one word that could conjure all of the above, but Japanese does. That word is Wai-wai and it stands for the sound of children playing.
Kids hardly ever understand the larger-than-life significance of these games. It is left to us grownups to ponder over the deeper meaning of Wai-wai and what it represents.
Long after we have ceased to play these games.
Do you like Wai-wai?