Side View Mirror

Unexpectedly, when we are truly watching, we can learn amazing things from the actions of our children: especially our younger children. We can see random acts of kindness, friendship, and joy.

Simply look.

This was such a moment……..


Done! Long day. No, a long week! But, a good one. Worked hard, resolved problems, thanked my staff, and left the office.

The third quarter profits were going to come in very strong.

Beautiful September evening; clear, sunny, warm, zero humidity, and a great time to drive home with the top down. I took off my suit jacket, threw it over my shoulder, loosened my tie, and put on sun glasses.

Fun car! All black full-size Chevy Cavalier convertible with a light grey interior; the last year GM would make a convertible in that model.

Even now, traffic in Northern Virginia was heavy, so I took some back streets and finally came out on Shreve Road which ran parallel to the Old Dominion Railroad and bike path.

Trees lined both sides of the narrow road and a late evening summer breeze was blowing through the leaves.

Just up ahead, I noticed two young elementary age school girls walking, skipping, and holding hands. Their arms were swinging high into the air, hands still clasped, stopping only briefly to look at each other, then laughing and giggling the way only young girls can.

The breeze played havoc with long strawberry blonde curls and even longer straight black shiny hair, seemingly raveling and unraveling magically, highlighted in sunlight as they walked along together.

A white girl and an Asian girl, happy, natural, obvious good friends!

I was so struck by this beautiful scene. I did not know them, had never seen them before, and yet in that instant, I wanted to protect and preserve that moment; that snap shot in time.

For them.

For me.

For all of us!

That moment represented what we all could and should be; what we all could and should feel.

They were close to the road, so I honked the horn slightly, and as they jumped to the side of the road together, they laughed, jumped up and down, and waved as I drove past.

I could not stop smiling. I did not want that perfect picture, that perfect moment to vanish.

I needed to make a sharp right hand turn, but just before, I took a glance back through my side-view mirror.

There, framed perfectly, still skipping, arms swinging high in the air, still laughing, the two girls etched themselves into my memory and had me smiling all the way home.