The least expected moments in our lives are often the ones that create the greatest impact.
I had one such moment yesterday.
At first, it seemed like such an ordinary thought. "I wonder what time it is."
Ah, there's a clock.
But it was more than a clock. It was a reminder, a recollection of sorts... yes, possibly even a nudge from the angels who have gone before me.
There on the clock, in plain English (and in the symbols of another language, and another culture), were the words, "Enjoy life, it is later than you think."
Hey, I just wanted to know the time.
But the clock brought pause. And in that pause, the hustle and bustle of a day at Story Land in Glen, NH with my seven grandchildren brought even greater joy than I could have imagined.
The clock was telling me more than the time. The clock was guiding me, directing me... even enlightening me on my most glorious journey of grandparenthood.
I looked around to see three of my grandsons intently studying the inside of a make-believe wishing well.
"I wonder what's down there," asked Andrew, who at nearly five is the oldest and wisest of the five boys.
"What IS down there, Andrew?" asked William and Jake, both three, and awed by the experience of their older cousin.
Oh, my beautiful little guys, there are dreams and hopes and joys and discoveries and adventures in that wishing well. Wish for all of them. They will come true.
And there were my two granddaughters, Taylor and Maddie, both six and still unaware of their breathtaking beauty and totally non-self-conscious of being with parents, aunties and uncles, and grandparents. Boys? No disillusionment here.
"AARRHH," they exclaim, pirates one and all. We can navigate this ship like the best of 'em.
The clock in the clock tower whispered to me to help keep the lives of these darlings filled with patterns and designs of adventure and enterprise.
And my little baby-boys. Alexander, who at two likes to hang with Pop-up one moment, ride a rooster another moment, and leisurely enjoy a Sno-Kone the next. And Benjamin, who at five months enjoys each gift of each moment.
Perhaps it is the truest and most magical gift of childhood that "time" does indeed stand still, even as the clock in the clock tower sweeps moments away.
And perhaps adults need subtle reminders once and again that "time" will stand still for us... if we are tuned into the poetry of children, and the extraordinary universe of children, where time simply ripens all things.
Ah, it is never too late to enjoy yourself.
Now is the perfect time.