When I first learned how to fold a crane

I was probably around five when I first learned how to fold a crane with origami paper. One day, I had a friend come over at my home, and while playing with origami paper, we decided that we wanted to know how to fold a crane, the most popular shape everybody seemed to make.

My mother volunteered to teach us. Though not an origami expert, even she was comfortable folding a crane. She took out a tiny foldable low table and made us both sit while she took a seat across from us.

“I’ll show you each step so you can follow me.”

Thus, our crane-folding lesson started. The beginning went smoothly. We folded the paper into half twice, then flattened out a piece into a shape that resembled a sailing boat.

“Now, this part is the most difficult,” said my mother after a few more steop. “Watch me closely.”

Another flattening took place, but this time, it was less obvious along which line we should flatten the paper. After some struggle, my friend managed to fold hers correctly, and with some further help, I managed mine, too. Now the shape had two thin strips on the lower half – looking like a person’s legs.

“Look!” I exclaimed with delight. “It has legs! It’s walking, see?”

I moved the strips so that the shape walked on the table. I thought it was a brilliant discovery. A sentiment that apparently wasn’t shared with my mother. She told me to stop and watch the final step.

“But I like my legs!” I replied. “I don’t want a crane. I want mine like this!”

Regardless of my comment, my mother moved on to show us the final step. The next second, a crane appeared on the table.

“Wow!” Both my friend held our breath in awe.

I quickly folded mine, too, and when a crane came out of it, I declared.

“I like my crane better than the legs!”