Living in a crowded city is a strange combination of crowded intimacy and lonely reserve. As an example, there is very small, below street level doorway garden less than a block from us that always has a magnificent collection of roses seemingly endlessly in bloom. When winter comes, there’s a small bird feeder with a constant supply of suet that takes care of hundreds of house sparrows.
The caretaker of this blooming bounty is a nice lady with whom I occasionally exchange a few words, never much more.
Today was different. Setting out on my usual street shooting walk, I noticed a woman chatting happily with the owner of a very cute dog. The scene didn’t really lend itself to a photo so I just sat and watched. The surprise came as she was leaving her conversation with the dog owner she turned and recognized ME.My wife joined us and the three of us had a friendly conversation.
Anyway, the upshot to this is that in this often lonely time we are living through, a chance encounter sweeps away a lot of dusty cobwebs.
Old age slows us down. That’s a given. But there are some people who accept their infirmities gracefully and just keep on chugging. This guy is one of them. He’s almost deaf and walks very slowly, bent over with a cane. He’s kind, always polite, almost courtly.
When I took this picture, he was trudging back to his house after taking his beloved Corgi for a walk. It’s a regular part of his day and we’ve never seen him go by without his sportcoat on even though his place is deep in the country and there is no need for that kind of formality.
The dog and he are such close companions. It is always lovely to see the two of them together.