Today, when I was driving to tuitions, I saw this couple crossing the street. They were middle aged and their hands were chock-full of packets of vegetables. The traffic was heavy and there wasn’t a zebra crossing in sight. The lady was clearly a chickie like me. Everyone who’s seen me cross even an almost empty road would realize that if my life depended on it (and it really does) I’d end up being seriously injured or killed in a road accident. I can’t cross roads. No matter how many times I look left and right, I still end up almost being run over 9.5 out of 10 times. She couldn’t cross a road either. She’d look left and right and then hesitate. She’d smile, take a step forward, take one back almost immediately. The husband stood by her side grinning. A shared joke perhaps? And I intended to not just slow down to let them pass, but to stop. But before that, he finally shifted the packets from both his hands to one, rested his hand on the curve of her back and with a smile so full of love, propelled her forward and helped her cross.
Now, call me a total cynic but I don’t see a lot of couples sharing such quirks pleasurably anymore. I could name atleast a few of my own friends who’d have teased their girl, rolled eyes and helped her cross. But this, this was special. This was a celebration of togetherness. Not just accepting the quirk, but loving it. Now I bet the lady has children. And I bet she takes them out alone too. And I’d be willing to bet the next 5 books I buy that she manages to cross roads with the children just fine. Motherhood teaches you that. But when she’s with her guy, she seemed to be her. She didn’t HAVE to put everything aside and focus on crossing the road. She could let it be. For those few seconds, her husband took care of her. And yes people, THIS is taking care of someone. This quiet, I’ll-make-an-unpleasant-task-bearable is taking care of someone. Not the, I’m asking how you feel, listening to you rant and then rolling my eyes mentally (which is what again, most people my age do.)
That one thing set the tone for the day. It made me feel warm and happy and hopeful. It made me smile and sing along to songs instead of focussing on the gridlocked traffic. I didn’t care a trumpet hoot about reaching tuitions quickly. But then, it WAS a math class. 😉
So there you have it. A shared moment of love which didn’t require any effort. That tiny moment of surety in this really fast world.
And as many such random sights make me think, so did this one. If “crossing the road” be a metaphor for facing your fears and moving forward, why won’t I let a person rest a hand on the curve of my back and smile at me reassuringly and help me cross that road?
But more on that…later. 🙂