Hell of a Guy
If everything seems under control, you're not going fast enough. - Mario Andretti

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Shopping for a Birthday Present…


June 3Oth was The Nancy’s birthday.  I did a little shopping and purchased a couple of little things for her at Macy’s, but realized as I left the mall, I didn’t get any wrapping paper.  I made a quick swing by a Target, since it was right in front of me as I was leaving the mall entrance.  After a short but productive stroll around the store, I found and selected a truly exquisite paper and a couple of magnificent bows – after all, what else would expect one to find at Target.  I got in a short line at a cash register behind a lady with a little girl and a small guy, maybe six-months old, in a carrier.  The little girl was talking a mile a minute to no one in particular, as little girls will do.  The little guy was just looking up at the lights on the ceiling, and quite happy just to “be” doing anything at all.

The mom asked me if I would like to get in line ahead of her, she had a number of items to purchase and I had but three.  I was so amused by the little girl; I told the mom I’d like to wait my turn so I could enjoy her kids.  She passed me a reluctant, somewhat suspicious “what-is-this-weirdo-about” smile, and began to put her items on the counter.

The little girl looked up at me, as she clutched a small package to her chest, and introduced herself as “Bellasaurus.”  I wasn’t quite sure I understood what she said her name was, so I just nodded and smiled.  She was holding on to her package with both hands, and immediately thrust it up in my face and told me with a slight lisp (probably why I didn’t get her name) it was a dinosaur egg.  And that is exactly what it said on the packaging – Dinosaur Egg.

As softly as I could, and with my best grandfatherly smile, I asked her what was she going to do when it hatched and a baby dinosaur popped out of the egg?  “They get pretty big, you know?”

She looked up at me with a puzzled look on her face and told me the egg was “fake,” as if she thought mine was a really dumb question.  So, I quickly changed the subject and I asked her how old she was.  She had to work at it a bit, but eventually held up four fingers.  I gave her a “Wow!”  Then I asked her about her name. “Did you tell me your name is Bellasaurus?”

She said yes and introduced her little brother “and that’s Hadensaurus” and her mother as “Gretchensaurus.”  Gretchensarus then told me Bellasaurus had a thing for any dinosaur, and that everything was a “saurus-this” or a “saurus-that.”

How wonderful it must be to be a four-year old, not that I remember much of it.  For me it was 1948, a hell of a long time ago.  No wonder I don’t remember.  So these days I get to vicariously live it again when I get close to someone of that age.  This time it just happened to be with a precocious little girl with a lisp at a Target store.  One with a vivid sense of what is real and what is really important.

And that is all I have to say about that… 

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