Sunday, August 23, 2009
Today, during my umpteenth assignment at the local racetrack, as I stood at the rails, idly fiddling with my camera and waiting for the horses to make their way into the starting position, I heard "You getting focused?" and realized that I was standing next to this man and his wife. Sure enough, no sooner did I see them, then a monarch once again fluttered by onto the track.
It was so strange to run into these people. These two characters who in my mind became confined to what I wrote down a year ago, a blog post come to life and standing in front of me.
Strange too because I'm sure the brief encounter we shared, though significant enough for me to want to record a snapshot of, wouldn't have stuck with them in the same way.
Beyond his comment about the butterflies, which made me feel worlds less alone at a time when I was more lonely than I could afford to admit to myself, both he and his wife were so generous and kind in their encouragement, urging me, a new and still shy reporter to "get in there and get the shot."
And yet, they did remember me, and today was no different. "There's a nice shot. Here, step in front of me, Kiddo," she said as he enthusiastically nodded from his walker.
We chatted a bit about how my job is going and they seemed genuinely excited to hear that I'd been asked to stay on at the newspaper. The woman remembered that the day we met had been my first time covering the races, and she noted that I seemed less nervous. I seemed to have a handle on it now. It felt good to realize she was right.
Seeing them was a reminder of the kindness of strangers, the kind who notice a butterfly among thundering hooves.
And, it was a reminder that those monarchs aren't the only ones. I've come a long way on my own tiny set of wings.
Posted by Sarah at 4:40 PM