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Learning to Walk

It's funny how people can impact our lives and we can completely forget them or even the fact that they transformed us.
My mom was emailing me a recipe for Rhubarb Rolls and she tells me this story.
“When you were young, around nine months old, a couple from the States came to London because the husband needed brain surgery. They needed a place to stay and contacted our church so Pa said they could stay with us. The wife spent most of her time at the hospital with her husband but his parents had come up as well. They were an old country couple and had a bunch of kids of their own. He just loved babies and spent hours with you on the living room floor. Holding your hands and walking you back and forth, back and forth. Really, he taught you how to walk. At nine months too. That's a pretty young age.”
I imagine an old man with rough knotted fingers and cheeks that feel like sandpaper. A body that bears the marks of years of hard labour coupled with a gentle eyes and a gentle touch.
Of course, I really don't remember anything about him at all. He came and went. And I've been walking ever since.
Thanks, old man.

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