She turns over the painted rocks, little hands picking up one, putting it down, choosing another.
"This one, with the bow and arrow," she decides. The stick-on design was a heart with an arrow through it. This is the rock she will give away.
Onto her tricycle she climbs, placing the rock in the white wicker basket that hangs between the streamer laden handles.
Humming as she pedals, she rides her bike next door, up the driveway, up the walkway, stopping at the front steps. When our neighbor opens the door, she bubbles with excitement.
"Norma, we have this rock for you!" she bounces up and down, her smile like sunshine.
Norma lives alone now that her husband Al has passed away. We used to see them sitting on their front lawn in chairs, Al with a beer, Norma with a glass of wine. They loved the warm breeze and the comings and goings that happen when you live across the street from an elementary school.
We sat with Norma for a while, chatting and Megan asking her questions about all the things in her house and her backyard. She looked up at wind chimes and said, "That looks like what babies have over their cribs!" She was right- it did look like a mobile. I marvel at the connections her four year old brain already makes.
We decide to go back outside, so Megan can ride her bike some more before evening sets in. Norma looks wistfully across the street, saying how she remembers letting her kids run across to greet their dad as he walked home from the train station.
"They get old so fast," she said as Megan climbs on her tricycle and pedals away.
The title of this piece refers to a "purple flower moment"- a moment you become mindful and remember. I read about it in Amy Krouse Rosenthal's Textbook, which is a book I cannot put out of my mind. Highly recommend it!