We can go through Life and encounter amazing experiences or memorable moments that we clearly remember years later. I’m not sure why that is, but clearly, some things make a deep impression on us. And sometimes, it’s the unexpected–the good unexpected, that makes the memory special.
Today was my going-to-the-supermarket day. I had checked the supplies, looked over the fliers and made out my list. Hovering over the apples, the lady next to me, gave a huge yawn. Well, as we all know, yawns are contagious and before I knew it, my yawn matched hers. We gave each other an embarrass smile and I made my way over to the broccoli. This time, I yawned and she giggled. Glancing over, I saw her by the tomatoes and she had just finished a huge yawn. By this time, we were buddies, bonded by veggies and yawns. She grinned and commented, “Produce is very boring. Too bad they can’t jump up and dance to grab our attention!” A deep masculine voice, emanating from the mountain of yams, replied, “I’ll do my best for you Ladies.” And the store employee, setting out the yams gave a brilliant Michael Jackson “moonwalk”, finishing with a dazzling twirl and a tip of his imaginary hat.” We just had to applaud this unexpected performance. A boring veggie day was definitely not on his agenda!
Little kids are known to do the unexpected. When they’re at the ages of 2-5, it’s an “untouched” time of their lives because they form their own conclusions on things they observe. Yes, they do learn from television shows, books, parents and other kids, but it’s always a revelation to hear them explain stuff as they see it. As I strolled to the Village, a little 3 year old was crouched over an event he was observing. While his Mom stood patiently to one side with a little one in a stroller, her son was giving her and his little brother, a running commentary.
“Look Mom—that itty-bitty ant is pulling that dead fat fly away by himself. Yuk–it’s dry and falling apart, but he’s not taking it away for food. . .looks like he’s clearing off the walk. Ooh-look, now there’s two other ants and they’re pulling this piece of fruit somewhere. Know what, Mom? That first ant is no bigger than the other ants. Wonder how they know what to do? Do you think they have a work board like we do, Mom?. . .Look Rudy, can you see the ants? Wish you were bigger so you can come here to look too. Mom, Mom? Did you see that worm? Can we stay longer, Mom?. . . .I wanna see what. . . ”
Me too, Kid—I want to hear what else you’re seeing. . .Don’t ever lose that wonderful enthusiasm.
In my City, “Tim Horton’s”, aka “Timmy’s”, is the doughnut place to dash to when that craving for fried dough hits. Now, there are newer very good, but smaller bakeries, producing great doughnuts who can give Timmy’s a run for its money. But, it was Timmy’s that I encountered a very precocious 3 year old, who had an amazing knowledge of doughnut “holes.” The little girl sat at the table beside me.
“I’m holding the table for Mommy. She’s bringing me a treat,” the tiny Munchkin informed me. “Is your Mommy bringing you a treat?”
“My friend is bringing coffees and doughnuts,” I told her.
“Mommy’s bringing me my bag of holes and my juice.”
“What are holes? And how do you eat a hole?” I asked.
“You know when the big bakerman makes those big round doughnuts with a hole in the middle? My brudder told me there’s a little bakerman who punches out the middles. That’s the holes. He makes them for himself ‘cept when he needs lunch money and has to sell some to buy his lunch.”
“I never knew that,” I told her. “That’s really amazing. How does your brother know this?”
“Cause he got to see where they make doughnuts. I’m not big enough to go to school yet, but I want to see this too! Jimmy shared his bag of holes with me. They’re just like the big ones ‘cept they’re teeny-weeny.”
Phooey—days later, I can’t seem to get rid of this image of a little bakerman, punching out doughnut centres and selling the holes for lunch money.
Another memory that is safely tucked forever in my mind. My parents gave me a jade ring when I graduated. It had a simple gold band with a plainly set green jade stone. I loved that ring. One winter, I approached my car in the parking lot and began to brush off the snow that had accumulated while I was at work. Later that night, I realized I no longer had the ring on my finger. Sick at heart, I realized that my gloveless hand had been so cold, the ring must have slipped off while I was sweeping the snow off the windshield. My Dad told me, “If that jade ring was meant for you, it will come back.” After a sleepless night, I gave myself an early start and somehow ended with the same parking space I had the day before. Stepping out on the snowy lot, I carefully checked the grounds. There, partially buried in the snow, was a hint of green. Dad was right. It was my jade ring waiting for me to reclaim it.
We all have “Special Moments” stored in our brains and tucked in our hearts—moments that can be treasured and replayed at our leisure; moments that were unforgettable because we lingered to capture those amazing minutes.