Sunday, December 19, 2010

Other Times

Intently the little boy stared in the window. Dad stood nearby watching the crowd move past on the sidewalk. A few would pause and look, most passed. Another boy paused by the first little boy and they just watched. Behind the second boy was an older gentleman, appeared to be a grandfather. The two men glanced at each other and smiled as the boys just stood there looking.

Soon the father of the first boy touched the cap and said, “We have to be moving on.” The boy slowly turned and grasped his father’s hand as they moved on with the hustling crowd. Grandpa and the other little boy remained.

Down the street the father and his boy walked. They passed an open door to a store. In front stood a man dressed in a red and white coat with a green cap. He was ringing a bell next to a small pot mounted on a stand. Dad paused and reached in his pocket and pulled out some bills, taking one and folding it up he told his son to place it in the pot. The little boy did and the man with the bell and funny suit, leaned over and told the boy, “Thank You.” The little boy looked up and smiled back and replied, “Your Welcome.”

Weaving through the people moving along the sidewalk the father and his boy continued walking. They had to dodge packages and bundles being carried by on walkers. In front of the big store window they paused because of the size of the crowd. Singing could be heard and music floated out of the speakers overhead. To get around the crowd they had to step out on the edge of the street. On down the walk they continued, the music fading in the distance.

Ahead was another store and people were milling around the window. Here they stopped for a look. The little boy’s eyes lit up as he got a glance in the window. Squeezing through the bigger people he got up next to the window. There were flashing lights, lighting up the display. Like a merry-go round the display changed as toys moved through the tunnel of lights. There were fire engines, big trucks, tractors, delivery trucks and semi trucks. All rolled by on the table as it went round and round, in the middle were tricycles and wagons with lights flashing off them.

The little boy stepped back from the window and when he had his dad’s attention he pointed to the side of the window. There was a small train set going round and round under a Christmas tree. There were buildings, homes, stores, stations and a train depot. On the sidewalks people were walking and there were cars on the street. Round and round went the little train. The little boy wiggled his way back to the window and pressed his face to the window to watch the train.

Shortly he felt a tug on his shoulder. Looking up he could see dad motioning to him. “We have to be going,” dad said. The little boy glanced back in the window, then turned to dad and took his hand as they walked on down the street.

Early morning dad walked into the living room with a cup of coffee, mom was behind him. They stopped for there on the stair way landing sat their little boy. Still in his pajamas, hands folded on his chin, resting on his knees. Mesmerized, he looked down the stairs. Below was a Christmas tree all lit up and underneath circled a tiny train.

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