Sunday, January 11, 2009

Dressing up at the lights

My favorite part about watching children is being constantly amazed by the innocence and transparency they exude. They are usually able to make the most of any situation and enjoy simple pleasures most.

I watched today as a young child pretended to be in front of a mirror. She put her head to one side and patted her cheek, then she did the same with the other side. Looks like she was putting some blush on. Then, she took a comb out and combed her hair, patted it, combed it some more and took a look at it again in the make believe mirror. All the while, she seemed to be talking to herself. She then strutted off to her mother to show the result. After sitting down next to her mother, the girl went to work on putting some moisturizer on her harms. She was in her own world, completely.

This is where I watched the girl. It took us several changes of the lights to get through. I got my camera out as soon as I saw her take an old and broken comb out but the cars kept getting in my way.

I smiled the whole time I watched the girl. She was so entertaining and acted out every detail of getting ready in front of a mirror. Usually I feel sad thinking of how these children must live but today, the girl exuded so much optimism. Of course, I know she lives in dire poverty and her mom (with the white headgear) certainly did not have any joy on her face but at least this little girl seemed to be having a few minutes of fun.

Some background:
I have seen this mother, carrying a younger sibling, sit on the island in the middle of this road almost every day. The young girl's job is to weave in and out of the cars, when they are stopped at the lights, to bed for money. They are not the only family there.

There is also another family that begs at this intersection. That one consists of a boy no more than 8 years old, carrying his toddler brother in the sling a whole day long. They also have a sister 'working' with them. I'm not sure, but I think their parents are sitting under a tree on the other side of the road.


Mike said...

"parents are sitting under a tree"

Talk about the ultimate in lazy.

johnorford said...

i remember being so shocked the first time i saw this... sigh...

bejewell said...

That is very sweet and heartbreaking all at the same time.

Amanda said...

Yes Mike, I couldn't believe it when I first started to get the impression that the parents were right there. Thats why I don't give any money. It'll just encourage them more.

John & Bejewell, thanks for visiting and leaving a comment :)

Bilbo said...

When we lived in Germany, Agnes wouldn't give money to beggars since the time she bought food for one; the woman threw it onto the ground because she wanted the money.