She volunteered at our local library…
Sunday, April 2012
Today I decided to drive to my local library where I sometimes work on my writings or just read while my Teto (that’s The-Tho to you) sleeps. This time the project was a poem about generations then and now so with headphones on I began to write. It was an overcast day, beautiful to me, and a bit chilly within the library. Not as crowded as usual perhaps due to the day of the week. I was on a roll.
A while later I notice from the corner of my, three shapes walking towards the wall I was sitting next to. They spoke softly and stood staring at the wall. I continued writing. A few moments later I heard the sounds of a camera snapping away and immediately my concentration was broken. Were these just kids messing around or bored with nothing to do but disrupt people’s attention? I tried to continue my train of thought but it was to no avail. Still, from the corner of my eye I saw the three shapes, only now they looked to be formed in a three-way hug. This caught my attention and turned to face their direction.
What I saw was nothing as I had thought. There stood a mother and her two children, admiring the mural (I hadn’t noticed before) on the wall. I was instantly curious. I couldn’t hear what the mother was explaining to her children but it seemed important to me. They took a few more photos, some standing next to their grandmother, other shots of just the mural. As they turned from the wall I seized the opportunity to ask if they knew someone on the wall and the mother informed me that the woman sitting in the chair in the mural was her children’s grandmother. The story was that their grandmother volunteered at the library everyday until her death in 2005. The mural had been unknown for a time within the family until that year when someone had told them about it.
The whole experience had made me a bit teary-eyed and emotional. It was a wonderful feeling knowing that this mother wanted her children to see a wonderful mural honoring her mother-in-law and the wonderful woman she was. It was a different culture than mine and all the more interesting. Although I did not probe further, I delved into my own image of who this delightful woman was and the happiness she brought to the children at the library.