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Bus Story: There are Riders Upon Riders

June 9, 2010

There is a regular pair I see on the ole 54 on my way home. It’s a dad with his son; the father is probaby in his 40s somewhere (he’s got some gray in his hair so it’s hard to guess) and the kid is probably no more than 4. Both of them are slight, wee fellows. And the boy is often riding on his father’s shoulders. I see them as they approach the bus, as well as when we ride the road home together. The boy talks nonstop as he sits on his dad’s shoulders, just about eye level with me. His sparkling eyes are filled with wonder and he has Lots To Say. Dad hmms and uh-huhs, keeping engaged but not interrupting or shutting the tyke down. I often can’t help but smile when I see them, and get tears in my eyes as I think about my own father and riding on his shoulders. It’s a place we never grow out of, if we were fortunate enough to be there at some point. The combination of support mixed with freedom and even some risk is an apt metaphor for how children, and adults, ideally move through the world. So if you can, lift someone onto your shoulders, let ’em see the world from up there and, for goodness sake, hang on to their ankles.

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From → Bus Stories

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