From where I sit I see the world
Life drifts by. It just does, irrespective of how hard you grab it. You can’t even change the number of experiences you fit into every second, all you can do is control what kind of experiences you have in those fleeting moments. You could try the eye watering rush of plummeting earthwards attached to an elastic chord, and why not? Its an easy way to feel alive. But what about sitting on a curbstone watching the comings and going of a hundred people on the sidewalk? That is just as worthy, maybe more so, but people don’t seem to think about that, I forget it sometimes and catch myself not looking around when surrounded by ‘normality’. And in that one moment of tunnel vision, I’ve wasted what’s around me. Then, during other moments, I get a great deal of pleasure out of studying the little things….
Across from me there is a man, an older man, perhaps 70, absorbed deeply in a book. His jaw works enthusiastically on a piece of bread without thought, all his power focussed on ‘The Geneva Deception’ – some crime or war novel I’d imagine. It looked like a pot boiler, but whatever, that doesn’t matter.
At the same time time the 2 girls behind the counter of the cafe whispered to each other, then one of them removed a small fairy cake with pink icing from under a glass bell where it was displayed. They put it on a plate and walk it over to him. He looked down at the cake, smiled a wide, open smile then looked up at the girl who put it on the table. He had pale grey eyes. His smile was child-like, honest, genuinely surprised and pleased. He carried on smiling and then smiled equally pleased over at the girl still behind the counter, his eyebrows raised in delight. They’d surprised him with a gift and he tucked into it with the same enthusiasm as he had the piece of bread, but giving it undivided and surgical attention for a second as he cut it in two. Then he tucked back into his novel, chewing rapidly, as if eating up the words as well as the cake.
Maybe he was a regular here, I expect he was. Either way, it was a nice, simple, pleasing interaction that was fun to watch, and satisfying I’d imagine for everyone involved. Seems to be the little things like this that keeps the world just about spinning straight and level. Just about. It only took two minutes to suck that small chunk of life around me up. It was more than worthwhile.