Monday, April 4, 2011

2011.04.03 A Day with Teen Girls in Boston

One way to spruce up Lent, if you so need, is to banish sombriety (yes, I made that one up!) and spend the day with two 15 year old girls in a big city.

One of these two enchanting teens is my grand daughter Gillian. She has reached five feet and is statuesque with pride, having anticipate a life worse-than-death-as-short.

Just getting on the red line subway was an adventure. Everything was an adventure even if it wasn’t really new. The two giggled their way along city streets.

They walked ahead of me as if they knew where they were going. I got to watch their Gilly Hicks butts swinging along, perky. If it weren’t for the color (not flesh colored) of the tight leggings (all the rage) you’d never know they had a thing on.

Some guy called “Hey cutie” to Gillian. This inspired a flurry of hysterical giggles—embarrassment and thrill all at once. I hadn’t seen the man but she said he was sitting in a chair on the sidewalk.

Each girl had some money. Grammy treated for lunch and took cellphone photos of them, their heads tilted toward one another, mouths fixed on straws as they sucked up their twin strawberry frappes.

Gillian asked if it were rude to noisily suck up the remainder of the frappe with the straw. I said go for it. If it’s delicious, delightful, get as much of it as you can. They slurped, pleased and innocent as suckling infants. My own motherly love knew no bounds as I took in their mutual delight. Eden joy!

After ogling the scant overpriced putative clothing options, they found an “everything” shop and purchased souvenirs of Boston, selected carefully and with conversation about what would be just right for Mom, Dad, siblings and their grandparental hosts.

Grampy and I got little duckies and a panoramic postcard of the Boston skyline. Mom got a rubber bracelet “Superstar” and younger sister one that said “Spoiled.” For themselves they bought the same woven pink cord bracelet— a cut above rubber.

These girls are nice girls. They have soul because both have resisted the temptation to be mean in order to belong.

The highlight of the day was the trip to the ladies room at the lunch place. On the wall were wise or witty quotes, Oscar Wilde, Shakespeare, Charles Manson, and more.

They came rushing out of the bathroom wanting pens to write quotes. “But we don’t know any quotes! Can you give us some?”

I jotted down one of my favorites: “I have set before you life and death. Choose life” paraphrased from Deuteronomy 30:15. “That’s great Grammy!” They never asked what Deuteronomy was but raced back to the bathroom to write themselves, and a little of God’s wisdom, onto the wall.

That’s how faith-in-memory happens—and then gets written over and over.

A day with nice girls in a buzzing big city is enlivening and therefore holy.