It is fall and New York is falling in love. Everyone is so happy, so cheerful. People we would normally have ignored, and who would have ignored us, became our friends and neighbors today as we walked down the street. Even the guys with dreads, waistbands down to their knees, and baseball caps covering their eyes.
So many smiles, and nods, and “Have a good one”s.
I heard people chuckle, amused, at Squish walking backward down the sidewalk, while his big brother rode in the stroller.
I feared comments about missing hats or gloves when we left our building this morning, but no comments came. There weren’t even any lectures about who should be riding in the stroller and who should be walking.
And there was only amusement when Squish pushed the stroller and it tipped backward and Manchild, strapped in, kicked his legs like a beetle and everyone behind me in the grocery line laughed and wondered why the big one was riding and the little one walking.
“They take turns,” I said, and that satisfied them.
Also, the stocker at the grocery store became our hero when he walked up to us, squatted down in front of the stroller, reached into the pocket of his apron and pulled out the little green airplane we lost there earlier this week.
I’m enjoying this little fling while it lasts, as I’m sure it will end soon. You see, even amidst all the chumminess and good feelings, I heard chatter about the coming snow, about winter, about cold.
Ah yes. Winter. That time in which we are made silent by the cold and invisible by the dark. It is coming, I am sure, and I am glad that we are taking this opportunity to warm each other before we retreat to our apartments and soldier through the winter side by side as strangers. Perhaps we will glance at each other awkwardly when we pass, or exchange quick, cursory, close lipped smiles. This fling will be a distant memory on those biting days, but I’ll keep that memory burning bright.