the line stretched five people deep, and though i was in a hurry, it was warm inside the library and i needed to thaw. the mother in front of me placed her two books on the counter next to her son’s two books. the librarian scanned the boy’s books first and he eagerly grabbed them as soon as they were ready. his eyes were saucer sized and his grin even larger as he flipped through the pages. the mother traded her thanks for her two books from the librarian and nudged her son.
the turning of the page was his only movement.
his mother rubbed his head.
his mother patted his head and whispered something in his ear.
he looked up, startled, and breathed, “thank you.” even from my angle, i could see him blinking the wonder of that book out of his eyes as he focused on his manners.
as they walked away and i stepped up, the librarian and i were wearing identical smiles.
librarian: he was so engrossed in that book.
me: i know. i am so charmed right now.
librarian: that’s enough thanks for me, really.
me: exactly. exactly.
she handed me my book, told me its return due date, and now thoroughly warmed by the place and its patrons, i was more than prepared for a return to the winter temperatures outside.