As I drove across the black rubber speed bumps and scanned my military ID card under the red laser, and the electric arm lifted allowing me to pass, I sort of shook my head at all the surveillance. Just think of it: cameras video you, your vehicle, your license plate; then your ID is scanned; then there’s a traffic light with another camera for more surveillance.
But then things changed.
I turned up my street. The sun was near setting over the western hill. Oaks, which grow abundantly here, stood majestic on the hill I ascended towards my place.
A young man (I’m assuming a dad) was tossing a baseball to a boy (I’m assuming his son). When the dad lobbed the ball to his son, the boy (who appeared to be six or seven-years-old) was completely focused on the ball as it traveled from his dad’s hand. Total concentration. There seemed no possibility that the son or the father would be thinking of anything but each other and the game of pitching the ball to each other.
When the boy threw the ball back to his dad, he’d jump in place in a form of pure adolescent ecstasy: up and down, up and down. His world was here, it seemed to say. Here now, with his dad, pitching the white baseball with red-threaded stitching, with the gold sun over the hill and the smell of a cold night coming on.
And as I pulled into my place, I was thankful to them, though they never saw me as I drove past–relishing, investing, expressing love through the simplest of ways–pitching the baseball on a Sunday evening.
Who knows, but that–one day–that boy may remember this ordinary day as anything but ordinary …
“No one suspects the days to be gods” (Emerson).