We were driving in town along a road which used to have a pedestrian crossing which now has nothing – it’s not a speedy road and there are traffic calming ‘sleeping policemen’ but it’s still not easy to cross. On the corner of a road joining the one we were driving along was a man waiting for the traffic to pass – and it was that intermittent sort of traffic which doesn’t give you quite enough time to safely get from one side to the other.
The man was quite slight and small – he may have been any age from mid twenties to mid forties, maybe in the middle. He had a khaki trapper hat, a khaki coat a little too long for him, indeterminate trousers and elderly trainers. He had a sad rather hangdog almost hopeless expression. Maybe he was actually quite cheerful and just had that type of face – maybe he was fed up with people saying cheer up! Worse things happen at sea! when he was perfectly happy inside.
He was probably fed up, though with waiting to cross. My daughter slowed right down and waved him across, but he hesitated as if not quite sure. She waved again and he set off across the road with a wave and a mouthed thank you. He looked so cheered that we smiled back and gave him a little wave. He stopped completely and mouthed merry Christmas! and gave us a little thumbs up. We were so tickled by this that we both mouthed happy Christmas back to him with another wave.
He reached the other side of the road, and with more grins, waves and smiles we drove on and he wandered to wherever he was going. It was such a little incident and yet it gave us a real glow for the rest of the morning as we went to buy cold remedies for the family. In fact I have a little smile on my face now as I write!