The Sorrows of Young Werther: May 27.
A family of trees.
Yesterday's rant about the talents of my former classmates made me totally forget about the two kids slash models. What happened was that I continued to sit under the trees for another two or three hours. As the afternoon light filtered through the leaves, a young woman came running and headed for the children, who'd returned to their giggling but hadn't left the spot at all. From a distance, she exclaimed, “Thanks, Philip! You're a good boy!” Then she said hi to me, I said hi back and rose to walk up to her. I asked her whether she was the kids' mom. She pulled a wrapped snack from her pocket and gave it to the oldest boy, Philip, while lifting the little one onto her hip and kissing him on the cheek.
“I have three little boys, actually”, she said. “Philip and my oldest broke my favourite pie dish yesterday, the one I got from my grandma as a little girl, and I had to replace it and get groceries for dinner.” I didn't have to ask about the oldest as he just came around the corner and carried the rest of the groceries.
We started chatting a bit, and I found out that she is a local as well (her dad is the school principal). Her husband is abroad, taking care of a family matter, and so they hadn't seen him in several weeks. I felt with them, and gave them a little pocket money for their earlier modeling, and then we parted.
My friend, when my thoughts are all in tumult, seeing a small family and a woman like her calms the rough waters of my mind. She seems to be perfectly at peace with her everyday life, approaches her needs one day at a time with a practical way of thinking.
Since that time I have gone out there frequently. The kids have become quite familiar with me; and I share my sugar packs with them when I drink my coffee, and they get the deserts I sometimes get for dinner. They are quite at home with me, tell me everything; and it's fun to me observing them, and the happy simpleness of their teasing, when some of the other village children are joining them.
Their mom thinks the babysitting (what it kind of is now) is too much trouble for me, but I really enjoy it.