We took the kids to an arcade/inside amusement park. The place wasn’t too fancy. The game room was typical. Skeeball games lined the walls and car games with the steering wheel and gas pedals were abundant. There were tons of ticket machines, the kind that has flashing lights and a bubble. You hit the bubble and the lights quickly circle the machine and land on a number. Whatever number the light stops on is the amount of tickets you win. In the lobby of this giant play room was a beautifully restored carousel from 1922. My older children and my husband went into an area where they could shoot plastic balls at each other through giant canon like machines. I accompanied my two-year old on her discovery adventure. It was the first time she saw a lot of these games and moving machines. She climbed into the rocket and pretended to take off. After returning from space she noticed an old ice-cream truck jumped in and believed she was actually driving. As I was following her to her next destination I noticed an older couple. They were standing in the middle of the lobby looking around. If I had to guess I would say they were well into their eighty’s. It was obvious the gentleman was a taller man in his youth. But now there was a small hunch in his upper back. The woman was much shorter than him and had the kindest eyes. Their steps were slow and they lingered in the lobby. I remember thinking they must be here to see their grandchildren. I raced to keep up with my very active toddler and forgot about the couple. It wasn’t long before my older children and my husband were running up to us. They grew tired of shooting balls at each other and running around. They wanted to take a break. “Let’s go on the carousel,” my son yelled. Good Idea, I thought. I went over to buy tickets and sent them to stand in line. When I came back I saw the most amazing thing. The eighty-some year-old couple was sitting on horses side by side. They didn’t come in to see their grandchildren. They came in to ride the carousel. Their faces glowed and they looked excited to be taking a trip around the moving platform. I wanted to watch my children’s faces but realized I was more engrossed with seeing theirs. Their eyes were connected and their smiles matched. A moment was being shared and I was experiencing with them. No longer did I see them as old people. I saw them as teenagers on their first date. I lived their life with them in a matter of minutes. I pictured them marrying, raising a family, welcoming grandchildren and lasting the long haul. I don’t know if they were rich or poor and it didn’t matter. They were happy and young at heart. Age is but a number, the child we were forever remains and this couple proved it.  I saw them ride off into the sunset. It was glorious.  

Advertisements