There is a place that I love to sit and “people watch”
It is a hobby that I have found to be entirely unique is its passiveness. It requires simply a comfortable seat and an eye for observation.
My spot is in the far corner of a small patch of grass. Shaded by trees and well groomed shrubs I watch the steady stream of persons walk by on the adjacent sidewalk, their faces illuminated brightly in the sun.
I notice familiarities in each unique person and a gradual image of the community that I am a part of behind to form.
For instance, each passerby is traveling, never wandering. In all my time watching the crowd in serene contimplation I have not found an individual seeking to simply explore. Eyes are fixed on the path ahead, with minds fixed on the destination and not on the details of the day. Yet my observation is not meant to be a judgement. All our lives are traceable by the destinations of our past and excitement we feel for future travels. My own wandering in this moment is only temporary and soon I will also have to focus my line of sight on the destinations of talks at hand.
Wait! I have found an outlier!
In distance a couple stands next to a fountain, it’s water glistening happily. The young man says something with the same expression as the happy water, is smile wide in his face. Suddenly he reaches in and takes some water in his cupped hand.
Too far to hear my mind immediately fills in the muted words, “Don’t you dare!” She says, her command cut short by the smile that she can’t hide.
The water is sprinkled against her shoulder. Her reaction is neither anger or irritation. Instead simply matches her damp shoulder by splashing water onto his.
And happily they continue on their way down the same sidewalk they had started upon.
“Not all who wander are lost.” The words of my favorite author spring forth and I find them adequate to express how I feel in this moment, having watched the happiness of others in a moment removed from the beaten path of daily life and its travels.