In the shower this morning, while soaped to the gills and enjoying the steam, I remembered out of the blue how our first grandson, who is nearly four years old now, went through a phase early on when he distrusted everyone except his sweet mama and my wife and me — and, because of my appearance, almost every long-haired, shaggy-bearded, disheveled person he saw in public. I’ve always been proud of that.
I also remembered a dream I had back around 1989 or so, in which a friend of mine, who was in his upper-twenties at the time, was an old, homeless, derelict man on a sidewalk downtown. He didn’t recognize me. Ever since, with no logic to support it, I have expected someday to find him that way.
I did in fact see him at the post office recently after a twenty-year interval. And by “him” I mean someone who looked very much like him, to the point that it could have been him, that it must have been him, and yet despite that I just couldn’t be sure. He wasn’t homeless, and yet there was already much of my dream in him. He was several people ahead of me in line. When he finished his business and left the building, I noticed that he also walked like my friend. I’m still wondering.