Laurelhurst Park sets the mind to right on days like this one. Brooding, mundane days when one hears all too well the rattle in the mind's closet.
In the afternoon, a dishwater sky weighed down on Portland. Morose, yes, but Rose City instincts are keen against the rain. We knew it would not. People dressed in hoodies and sweatshirts to walk their dogs. No umbrellas. No hats.
At the foot of the red brick stairway on the park's north side, a wide-eyed toddler held his mother's hand, mouth agape. His tottering steps indicated that the little fellow had not been walking long. To him, the world was new and wondrous. He gaped at me as I walked past, so I smiled and gave him a little wave.
His young mother smiled back, knowingly, and I wondered if she thought I had children of my own. Or maybe she thought I had grandchildren.
Shane and Kirsty sang in my earbuds:
I could have been someoneThese moments come at odd intervals --these moments of assessment and orientation.
Well so could anyone
You took my dreams from me
When I first found you
I kept them with me babe
I put them with my own
Can't make it all alone
I've built my dreams around you
How did I get here? I never planned it. It just happened.
And I have no regrets. How could I? With everything I've been given?