Have you ever come across someone who simply made you smile?? no rhyme or reason. The corners of your mouth just turned up and your heart was lightened when you saw them.
In the heart of our town’s “old town” is a statue, below it is a fountain with a pool of water. It has become a wish pool filled with pennies and coins containing the wishes of our residence. In the evening just before twilight, a group of us were walking through the square. Laughter surrounded us as people dinned nearby and groups got ice cream or shopped, the square rats were hanging out, smoking and “chillin” as usual. I saw someone who just made me smile.
He didn’t quit look homeless, all be it, maybe a little crazy but there was something about him that emanated a serene peace. He carried a backpack on his bag and rugged shoes on his feet. His clothes were tattered and he certainly didn’t look clean. He wasn’t asking for anything, just prancing around in his own little world. He looked so happy. With a skip in his step he went down to the water. He bent down, immersing his hand in the pool of wishes and then turned to press his soaked hand on the brick sidewalk behind him, leaving his mark. And then he simply walked away.
We just stared, it caught us off guard. I was not the only one whose mouth turned up into a sweet smile. He had a presence. And it was contagious. We couldn’t resist. It was spontaneous and seemed like something bigger than what we could understand. So we followed his example. We walked down to the water, dipped our own hands and planted our mark right next to his. Staring back at us a was a cluster of different shapes and sizes all together in the same spot and made with the same materials.
The randomness of his action and the breaking away from the mold is something I won’t be forgetting anytime soon. His originality caught the one’s around him off guard. Even though he may have looked different, I knew that when I was looking at him, it was as good as staring in a mirror. I was human, just like him. And like him, I had a place on the earth, a wish for the pool and a hand print to make.
He didn’t know it when he danced his way around the square that he was planting a little piece of his heart in us. His smile spread like a fire and his spontaneity was transferred to us.
Seeing him that night, I was assured of something my heart has known all along.
We are all the same.