Tuesday, September 18, 2012
sister bertrille -- fly home
The plaza grande in Pátzcuaro is one of my favorite places in Mexico.
It has all of the elements for semi-professional people watching. Families. Children. Dogs. Vendors. Young people in love.
I have had very little contact with nuns. For some reason, though, they fascinate me. And on Monday in the park, there were more nuns than you could shake an eighteen inch ruler at.
I am not certain, but I suspect most of the nuns sitting on the bench eating ice cream were on an outing from a home for elderly nuns. There were a few younger nuns who seemed to be playing the role of shepherds.
They all seemed to be quite content with life. And that has been my experience. Nuns know what the world is about, but they have chosen a form of life dedicated to their faith. Maybe that is what fascinates me about them.
Or it may simply be their joy for life. A separate group of nuns walked by -- occasioning a hearty round of Christian cheer.
Or maybe it is their dignity. I tried to surreptitiously take a photograph of the older nun. Not because of her age. But because of the wisdom her years represent. And her sheer beauty.
Both of the nuns saw my sly shot, and smiled at my naughty boyness. They then walked a bit out of their way merely to wish me a very sincere “buenas tardes.” The extra steps were an appreciated sacrifice -- just for me.
After the nuns left, this young dad showed up. Doing his best to capture the joy of his son chasing pigeons.
I suspect the greatest joy was the dad’s -- watching his son who, probably only months before, was crawling, and was now trying out those legs that would propel him through life into old age. Where he could, one day, sit and empathize with the nuns.
But the dad, his son, the nuns -- even the pigeons -- in the square always refresh me. Letting me be, for one shining moment, part of their lives.