Last weekend, I joined friends for brunch in a city not far from Manhappiness. While the bacon was delicious, the stories of the people filling the booths nearby wove a song in the round…an infinite canon.
About midway through the conversation and bacon, an older couple came in and sat to our left and towards the windows. She was dressed in her swanky fur coat and he in his sweater, loafers and Einstein-looking hair and glasses. You could tell it was love.
They sat side-by-side in the booth, flirted and held hands during most of their meal.
She, with twinkly eyes like every other 18-year-old girl in love and he with a sweet patience and calm made my own conversation difficult to track. As a sociologist, I am comfortable with observing people.
But this conversation among these two long-lived humans seemed so intimate though I could not hear one of the few words they seemed to share. They leaned into one another. They turned to one another and maintained eye contact.
You could tell they enjoyed one another.
It was a wonder to bear witness.
As our group laughed over the variable merits of buffets over a la carte dining and the upcoming SuperBowl, the older couple seemed oblivious to the rest of us, except the very deliberate and kind waitress we shared (Thanks again, Nancy!)
We often think of wonder in terms of galaxies and doing or creating.
This was wonder in two people being.
They were not obviously people of great wealth, power, persuasion or puffery.
They could have been you and I in 30 years. She laughing and him loving her. Their hands squeezing to punctuate the ebb and flow of their curated conversation.
Such a thing is a wonder to witness. I can only imagine what it is to cultivate.