Sunday, August 08, 2004

Norman Rock...well maybe not

On a regular basis on my daily walk I see two young children, a boy and a girl. They are absolutely gorgeous children - blonde, big blue eyes. The girl is perhaps 4 or 5, and her younger brother is I would guess 2 or 3. They're often in their driveway as I march past and quite often they will wave. Occasionally the little boy will have something in his hand - a ball, or toy - and start to approach me speaking rather fervently in a language which I'm sure I'd understand better were I two or three years old. The kids are so very beautiful I have been tempted to stop and take their picture, but have always opted not to because....well because in the world we live in today I suspect that could easily be interpreted as "creepy."

Usually their Dad is nearby in the garage, but we've never made eye contact.

Yesterday I was walking by the house and noticed the whole family...Mom, Dad, and the two kids. The kids waved again. The family was obviously preparing to go out somewhere, but it crossed my mind that I might stop and simply say, "I have to tell you, you have a beautiful family."

That would be uncharacteristic for me, but I remember it happening twice when our kids were younger, both times at restaurants, where a complete stranger approached us and said those very words, and then went about their business. It made Amy and me feel very proud.

I thought about those times and as I neared the family, I made the decision and worked up the nerve to actually do it.

Then, when I was only about 15 yards away, I noticed the Mom - an attractive woman - pull out a cigarette, stuff it in the side of her mouth and spark it up in a manner that betrayed her obvious long fed addiction to tobacco.

I kept walking. The perfect picture tainted.