He ran with abandon toward the bear then launched himself at the inanimate thing that sat idly on a sidewalk in Victoria. I had my camera at the ready to begin with, so I caught that moment of deep love that happens in make-believe that we all experience, however briefly, when we are children.
That expression of pure joy, of a dream suddenly realized. When we are small so many things are magical to us. In fact, many aspects to this life are.
And then, we grow up.
Some of us become jaded. Our hearts are broken, dreams are trashed but we move on understanding that those childhood notions were simply that.
Still, we think back to them rather fondly, don’t we?
That desire to feel so uninhibited. Where just the joy of a sunrise could leave us breathless or a stuffed animal that needed a hug.
Or perhaps it was us that needed the hug and not the stuffed animal.
I loved Paddington Bear as a child. I’ve expressed this before.
My very first true love was Mr. Ed, the talking horse.
A beautiful Palomino whose owner was named Wilbur. I adored him and quite proudly told my father that I was going to marry Mr. Ed when I grew up.
My first heartbreak was administered then. Daddy dearest informed me that I was being stupid. I couldn’t marry a horse and besides, by the time of was of age the damn thing would be dead.
And really it wasn’t my first heartbreak. There were many, just one of the more significant ones that was bestowed upon my juvenile tendencies.
That innocence of loving, just because.
And as we grow we have our little fantasies. We have crushes on movie stars and sport stars, on characters.
At 10 years of age I fell in love with Mr. Spock on Star Trek. My girlfriend Cheryl had it bad for good ol’ Captain Kirk.
At 13 years of age I flipped over Bobby Orr. My dad took me to one of the first games Vancouver played against Boston.
And I was torn.
The love of my life was playing against my home team…but I still loved him. We beat Boston 5 to 4 during that game.
I had it bad for David Cassidy of the Partridge Family. And so the list continued. Absurd little crushes that seemed to come out of no where.
Then the heart began to be broken in earnest.
It was as if all those childhood let downs were preparing me for the grown-up stuff.
I was going sideways with the whole thing anyway. It would take a lifetime to understand fully and even now, I’m not certain I do.
There is no fault to be had. It’s just one of life’s little foibles. We make our choices or they’re made for us and we accept them.
Then we act or react to those choices.
Still, there is a sweetness I feel at wanting to run through a mud puddle at the age of 56 or at sitting up late to watch ‘Pinky & the Brain’ on re-runs.
I delighted in Despicable Me 2 and every time I see a horse I feel a little giddy.
I was about 8 or 9 years of age when we vacationed for two weeks up at Canim Lake in BC. The horse was name King and I was prone to sleep on him at times, so enamored was I.
As I watched the little guy openly display his love for the bear when we came upon a Moose sitting on the sidewalk a little further up the way, I insisted my gal pals settle in for a pic.
And there is an honesty to just being. Just taking the moment and running with it, appreciating it for the simplicity and enjoyment that it offers, however silly it may seem.
If there are secrets to this life, then I would venture to say this would be one of them. Just express yourself freely as long as it is done with love in your heart.
I hope that little boy remembers seeing the bear on the sidewalk and smiles fondly at it as he gets older.
Enjoy your day. Peace.