(This will be short today…I’m off for a birthday lunch in a few minutes, but may be the only time I have to write today.)
“Hey!” I tug at Mave’s sleeve, “Isn’t that Mr. Harris?”
Mr. Harris, the P.E. instructor who developed a “fun run.” (This is an oxymoron. I can feel all my organs jiggling when I run). During “fun runs” Mr. Harris jogged alongside of us, encouraging, sprinting from one student to the next, lapping us all. He now walked ahead of us, a steady pace, two little boys attached to each one of his hands. He looked exhausted.
“Yes,” Mave said. “Perhaps we should catch up.” I looked upward, because I thought a cloud passed overhead, but Mave’s face cast the shadow.
“Mr. Harris!” I called, “Hey there!” Safety in numbers. An expression I had always heard, but never fully understood until right then. Kind of like “life as we know it.”
He turned around, his face and clothes a bit grey. The two small boys also turned toward us. All three had bright red matching packs. All three looked as though they just escaped the devil himself.
“Mave, Elaine…” A sparkle of color seemed to come out of the grey, “I’m so glad to see you both safe.” He rested his hand on Mave’s arm a moment. “And now we have traveling companions. Isn’t that great boys?”
One boy was maybe five. The other one, Jonathan, I’d seen on the playground. He was in third grade.
“These are my boys, Jared and John.”
“Hi Jared. Hi John, I think I’ve seen you at school.”
“Yah…” he said. “Me too.”