Tuesday, January 20, 2009

This Was A Good Day

hold my hand
Originally uploaded by Phil Bardi
Against expectations, this post will not be about Obama. Well, not much at least.

Yes, watched the inauguration, was moved by Aretha Franklin but that´s that. I want to write about something more personal, smaller. Three years of age and approximately one-metre-high to be exact.

In last month´s Monocle the editorial staff had done a list of 50 promises for 2009 which would help you make your life better and for you to feel happier. The things on the list were actually quite excellent such as overhauling your magazine subscriptions, finding a sunny spot, changing your way to work and starting a recipe book. One of my favourites was starting to plan your dream house. I look at my neighbouhood in a fresh way now. The list is on our fridge door and already two things have been crossed as "done".

I chose 37 from the 50 things on the list but this is one to add: hang out with your little relatives regularly. Today - for the first time - I picked my nephew from day care and we took public transport to his home. It was just awesome.

This little guy in winter clothing looking like a Michelin Man was happy and energetic from playing football outside. He commented on people passing by and was quite excited by the tram and metro. My favourite moment was the three-year-old boy on the bright orange big metro seat chewing on the liquorice bar we picked from the kiosk together. He looked so happy and relaxed swinging his legs in the air.

All through the trip for me the little hand holding mine nearly brought tears to my eyes. Kids are way cool. And so is responsibility. The fact that my sister and brother-in-law trusted me enough to let look after their precious little guy home felt amazing. My godson squeezed my hand so tightly through his ridiculously thick mittens. This afternoon hour goes up there to my list of top experiences.

This day made me think of this comment a friend of mine made once: how would our society be different if the primary goal of the society would be a good childhood? What kind of obligations and duties it would give to us adults? And what kind of possibilities would it open for more adults to help parents make that dream happen? Was it Hillary Clinton ripping an African proverb: it takes a village.

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