An Extraordinary Afternoon

On this blog, I usually avoid discussing national and world news. I figure we’re already over-dosed with the 24/7 news cycle from TV, print, and social media.

This week, I’m making an exception – not so much to discuss the recent events, but to talk about what happened afterwards . . .

If you’ve been reading here for a while, you know that I LOVE Boston.

I was born and raised there. It’s the city where Sir Beads and I met and fell in love. The surrounding areas are home to most of my family.

So, as you can probably imagine, we were devastated by the horrific nightmare that began at the Boston Marathon and continued over the next several days. We were glued to the reports and life seemed to stand still for a time.

But, it’s what occurred in the aftermath that I want to focus on today.

A week or so had passed and by then we really needed to shop and do a few errands, so we headed to the stores.

Generally, people at the mall seem detached, or rushed, sometimes grumpy, even rude. But on this day, after such a difficult week, there was a distinct change.

It’s hard to explain how I became aware that the mood of people around me was quite different than usual. Very gradually, as I negotiated the aisles with my shopping cart, I began to notice that people were making eye contact and then smiling. I don’t ever remember receiving so many smiles from strangers in one day. But even more amazing – people were kind. Several times, I encountered another cart in my path but invariably the person pushing it would jump out of my way . . . even apologize for the inconvenience!

At one point, I came upon an older lady who was waiting for a prescription. She was sitting on a store bench but leaning into the aisle area. I realized I couldn’t easily get by, but I didn’t want to bother her so I began to turn my cart in the reverse direction. Immediately, she stirred and said, ”Oh wait, please come ahead. I’m sorry. I must be asleep.”

Such a contrast to the customary aloofness of passers-by . . .

It was as if the events of the previous week had reminded everyone that we are truly one very large family . . . that we need to appreciate each other . . . be good to each other. Surely we knew that already . . . but it’s so easy to forget.

As we headed for our car, a young man, smiling broadly, called out to Sir Beads: “Hey, I like your jacket!” (a Red Sox jacket)

It had been a day of unexpected healing. The young guy’s comment was simply the icing on the cake. We drove home feeling better than we had in quite a while.

Life may be frighteningly uncertain, Kids, but there’s great comfort in knowing that when things get really tough, we are surrounded by good-hearted people.


Extra hugs for all of you,


I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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