Today, during my lunch break from work, I walked over to Target. There is a serious lack of decent places to eat around where I work, especially when you only get a half-hour break. So I meandered over to Target and wound up getting some mozzarella sticks from their little snack center place. They weren't especially good, but hey, they were only two bucks, I was short on time, and I was pretty darn hungry. So they certainly did the trick.

As I ate and did my best to relax in the rather uncomfortable bench seat, I people watched. People watching is one of my favorite activities, because there's so much to learn by doing so, and it's also entertaining. Streams of people bustled into Target, all intent on getting that last-minute gift as time to do so slips away. It's fun to watch families in there, working very hard to manage the kids while at the same time surreptitiously buying gifts for them. And then there's the people running errands on their lunch break, hustling in with list in hand and a look of sheer determination on their faces, ready to tackle the shopping at hand. The best part for me is that I am not one of these people. I lack the stress these people have, and I'm okay with that. I've had my share of stress for the year, especially with this most recent semester's massive projects and tests that lasted throughout my last month of school.

What really made my day, though, came not from the holiday crowd itself. A young mother came to the little Target snack place, accompanied by her infant son (I would guess he was about seven months old or thereabouts). She had bought Cheetos and a coke, and he was a long for the ride in the cart. As she got her fountain drink, she gave him a Cheeto to munch on. The little guy stared at the bizarre orange thing in his hand, and apparently seemed to think that it might not actually be food. But following Mom's example, and being a toddler by nature anyway, he decided what the heck, he'd give it a try. He carefully brought the Cheeto to his mouth and tasted it. Then he used his teeth and bit off a bit. He paused, contemplating the new sensation and taste that filled his mouth. He then decided that it wasn't so bad, and continued chewing.

At this point, he became aware that I was watching him. He looked at me, then at the Cheeto, then back at me. And then he began talking wildly about this food he beheld:

"Gom du hack meh beh waligo."

[Raised eyebrows and a grin from me.]

"Baligo goni tanish. Raf rem luvas."

And the conversation continued thusly, him explaining in great detail all about the Cheeto he was nibbling away at. And the whole time, I could not help but smile. I didn't have to say a word, this little guy only needed a smile to keep him going. What a great kid.

Seeing and "communicating" with this little guy made my week. What a great feeling kids give you, and they don't even have to try.


This will be my last entry for about a week or so, as I will not have access to my computer. I imagine that I will see plenty of stuff to provide for some good posts next week. Take care, and I will catch up with you next week!

-Phil