What’s wrong with noisy people?

Stickler lost interestNothing at all. Usually, they’re having fun. And, sometimes in the midst of the uproar, there’s a little, unexpected oasis…

Toddler’s birthday party

The joys, OMG, the joys! Little people rush around, vibrant packages of energy and honest emotion. Love, anger, delight, jealousy … Day-Glo bright on every sleeve.

Then, of course, there are the parents and grandparents. Wine, beer and food, consumed with gusto (this is Scotland after all). Conversations disrupted by tears and needy wee folk. The babble rises and falls like surf on a beach.

Weight off

There’s an advantage to being a driver for a family event in Scotland—no alcohol. Circulate, catch up, have a few world-to-rights conversations, laugh with some people … and then a quiet seat as life charges on.

There’s a row of wooden chairs against a wall. I sit. A lively grandson drops by for a chat. He moves on. I relax and talk with someone across the room. Then, I notice a presence.

Peace in the midst

Two seats along, a young man, thinking. We catch eyes. I raise an eyebrow. He shares a half, almost dreamy smile.

‘Enjoying some peace?’ An almost uncertain-nod is the response. ‘There’s nothing wrong with being quiet inside and thinking stuff to yourself.’

He smiles, nods, but doesn’t speak.

‘You were somewhere else?’

‘Yes.’

‘Nice?’

Big nod. ‘Yes.’

We shake heads at each other and sit, hushed, amidst a quietening riot. I reflect, suddenly lost within. When awareness returns, he’s gone … back to noisy.

Fond farewell

When they’re ready to leave, he comes to me for a hug. His brother gave a wrestlers, competitive, shoogle of a squeeze. He gives me a firm embrace and looks into my eyes with deep, calm warmth. Connected, I rub his back and release him.

Then he’s gone, fading slowly into a warm memory. I know peace.

© Mac Logan