Strangers Through the Garden.

Is in inevitable to completely lose touch as we get older, or have some people just never had a grasp? Today at the nursery while waiting in line for a latte a guy, presumably in his fifties asked the barista “What does espresso mean anyway? It’s Italian for something! I thought it had something to do with the way you go to the bathroom afterwards!” The tone in his voice led me to believe that he was a professional, annoying people for years. Two thirds of the way through life and still making potty jokes is not exactly what I had in mind for my future. In the Japanese garden where the egg hunt was to happen uncomfortable parents gathered. I say uncomfortable because for most of them this was the expression on their faces. Not so much as to be there among the crowd, but more so with themselves, their partner, their family unit, and their position in life. The kind of expression that says “I have a nice house, I drive a nice car, and my clothes are in the height of fashion…now what?” You could separate these families easily from the crowd. The couples that don’t stand too close to each other, let alone make eye contact. The couples who’s only communication is through their child they way you divert the awkwardness of a stranger talking to you through social faux paux. Unable to escape, only able to divert the conversation toward something more trivial and less confrontational. These people walk through life oblivious to any one else and completely blind to them selves.
Then there were the children. Running around with baskets on their heads, rambling on about things that don’t make sense or sound awkward as they try on a new sense of humor and fitting into their surrounding world. I wonder when it is that my five year old son will no longer seem cute, but instead odd like the older children who seem slightly out of place, weather too old, or too young for their surroundings. And when did that happen with me for that matter. At what point did I go from adorable to just some snot nose little kid. The transition that occurs when the elderly stop and make small talk on the streets to the point where they peer out of their blinds in suspicion. In this moment of clarity where do any of us fit in?


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