As I walked, I enjoyed the scenery, particularly the older houses in this part of town. Oh sure, there was the occasional falling leaf which annoyingly stuck to various parts of my hair and face and even a few clusters of flying gnats that attempted entry into my nostrils. Nonetheless, I had a lovely walk and lots of fresh air. As I marched along, I happened to notice a small green item on the pavement in front of me. It was the little guy pictured above...a beanie baby sporting the words "Baby Rocks!" on his t-shirt. I immediately recognized it as a favourite toy which was probably hurled from a baby stroller by a youngster practising his or her pitching skills. I have retrieved and lost many similar items when my own children were young. I looked around. There was a pair of elderly people sitting on a bench to my right. I saw a lady walking a dog slightly to the left. Then I spotted a young couple with a little girl and a baby in a stroller ahead. Picking up my pace, I got close enough to yell "Excuse me" and garner their attention. I was pleased with myself as I showed them the toy and asked if they had lost it. All the while I assumed the answer would be "Yes, thank you so much for finding it, but instead I heard the unexpected response, "No, it's not ours."
I wandered on disappointedly, trying to decide what to do with my new found froggy friend. I didn't want to toss him unceremoniously back to the ground. Besides, I had embarassing visions of someone coming up behind me and saying "M'aam, you dropped your toy". I glanced at a pillar in front of the local funeral home, but decided that putting a frog atop one of those would appear somewhat disrespectful. There was a coffee shop with an outdoor table and chairs. "Hmmm...." I thought. Cute, but no. Finally, I decided to bring the beanie frog home with me.
As I walked past one older style building I viewed a woman in an open doorway. She was wearing veils, a bikini top and bare feet with coins jingling from her shaking hips. Curiosity got the best of me and I hesitated, slowed down and briefly stared. She looked back at me at which point I said, "That looks like fun."
"It is. Come on in," she shouted. I did. After all, who was I to miss out on an opportunity to learn something new about this town? As it happens, I learned a lot. I was assured by the owner of the "Moksha Belly Dance Studio" that I too could participate in this activity. Much of her clientele is "mature" and the oldest person taking her class is in fact 89. Wow! After receiving many details about times and dates of classes for people of my...er...ability level, I thought I might give this a try in the new year. I will participate in a class called "Wise Women Introduction to Belly Dancing Foundations". I think the "foundation" part might be referring to clothing some of us have to wear in order to look respectable while attempting this activity.
So my walk today was quite eventful. From bugs to beanies to belly dancing. It really was as Mr. Rogers would say, a "b"eautiful day in the neighbourhood.