A few weeks ago, as the snow finally melted from the sidewalks, we were inspired to find adventure in the everyday by the Hike it Baby 30 Challenge. I started taking the kids on walks around our small town when we couldn’t make it to the trailhead. On our first walk, we found some peculiar graffiti – a huge, bright-yellow hand on the side of a mailbox. Addie thought it was neat, so we snapped a picture and moved on.
On our next walk, we discovered another hand print! This time on the side of a store. Though the second hand was much smaller, they were clearly connected. But why? Who made them? And what did they mean? We had a small town mystery on our hands!
The next few walks, we found nothing new. We were bummed to have lost the trail. But driving home from church on Sunday, we discovered a fourth hand. Addie was so excited – I pulled the car over and we took a picture of the hand on the back of a stop sign.
Later that day, I went for a walk with the twins, and decided to head back to the stop sign to see if I could spot more hands. Not only did I find more, I found purple ones as well! They were painted on a brick sidewalk, curbs, and a fence. One of the purple hands so easily blended in with the gray asphalt, we almost missed it!
The last tag we found was on a utility box of some sort, and it had a large yellow hand and small purple one. That’s when I noticed the letters, “fwtL” stenciled just below the yellow hand. I looked back through all of my photos, and noticed the same letters on the mailbox. A Google search turned up little – so the mystery of the hands remains unsolved.
Although we haven’t unraveled the origin of the hands, they have transformed our walks around town into an adventure. Much like urban trail blazes, they have led us to explore new parts of our town – which got me to thinking – how much fun would it be if urban areas had markers for folks to discover and follow?! They would add a little adventure into the everyday and help people find new places to explore.