Spring is finally starting to bloom in the city and is bringing all sorts of fun things with it. Allergies and that weird smell of B.O./fish/flowers on the street. But my absolute favorite thing that spring brings with it is babies! The babies are out in full force lately and there is nothing that makes me smile more than watching a baby.
One of the things I missed the most when I graduated college was watching the kids on the rope. The on-campus day care would take the kids on a walk through campus but in order to keep track of everyone the little ones held onto a jump rope with multiple handles. It’s pretty much the best thing ever in life to see. Albeit they were more fun in the winter when every single one was bundled like the little kid in A Christmas Story and they couldn’t grab the rope properly because their arms were propped up by too many layers. And then, when one tiny tot inevitably fell down, the layers, while serving as padding, prevented them from being able to get up and they rolled like a turtle on it’s back. And they usually pulled down a few of the kids around them.
You can see why I would miss something like this. But now, thanks to the warming weather, the babies are coming back out! I’ve decided that I would love to be a baby in the city. Aside from the fairly claustrophobic feeling that I’m pretty sure goes hand in hand with those bizarre cellophane stroller covers, city babies have a good deal. For one thing, think of all the interaction they get in a day. They get to play with their parents, then the nanny, then everyone on the subway or street or line at Macy’s who stops to make the obligatory silly baby face. You know the one I mean: cheesey grin, exaggerated “HI!” with that hand-puppet wave.
I’ve had 2 pretty fantastic baby sightings so far this spring. The first was in Macy’s. While in the dressing room I heard some little gurgles and the most cheerful mom ever saying things like “Well you have a lot to say, don’t you?! You’ve got quite a lot to say today! Yes you do!” When I emerged, purchases in hand, I was pleasantly surprised to have the baby in line behind me. My own mom was with me, so while she took the reigns in line, I turned and waved. My new little friend smiled back at me and then I started to chat with the mom. While we made baby-related small talk, the bundle of pink stuck her tiny tongue out. I couldn’t believe it! And she kept it up. So I did the only logical thing. I stuck my tongue right back at her and said “Oh! You aren’t the only one who can do that! See, I can do it too!” And she giggled and I spent the next 20 minutes obsessing about how in love I was with that particular baby.
My next pretty awesome sighting was with what the flirtiest infant I’ve ever seen. She was a subway baby. I smiled and waved at her from where I was standing. She smiled and then lost interest (we’d reached another stop and she had new people to amuse her). A young couple sat near her and her mom. She was strapped into one of those baby straight jacket things so she had fairly limited mobility. But she had quite the crush on the new guy next to her. She smiled and she kept reaching her hand out to his. But not the whole thing–just her little pointer finger (not in the creepy E.T. way though). And he waved and smiled but she kept trying to poke him. So he did the only logical thing. He tapped his finger to hers. It was like pounding, but with fingertips instead of the whole fist. And it was probably the most adorable thing ever.
So if you’re still feeling glum after the winter chill, go catch some baby fever. It will thaw out even the grinchiest of souls.