So last Saturday we were at Wal-mart, and J was frolicking with the discount paintbrushes and el-cheapo sno-cone syrup like a lottery winner in a ho-house. After loading my wifely cart with Bounty, White Cloud, Lysol Wipes, and trash bags, I plunked myself down on a bench in plasticware to await his clearance for departure.
I was not far from the day's highlight--a mangy white rabbitish human holding an egg and wearing footie pajamas. He was conveniently ambling between the endless shelves of Easter candy, baskets, cellophane grass, plastic eggs, doo-dads, and other crap--and the garden center, where a disinterested woman was getting reamed for giving out two free pansies instead of one.
I tried not to watch all the parents filling their carts with Easter booty right in front of their mewling progeny, thus destroying any potential belief in the true Easter Bunny who hops through windows and fills baskets while the wee ones are fast asleep. Now it's all "Mom, gimme," and into the cart it plops.
But then a mother with two girls, perhaps 3 and 4, wandered up, and the tinier girl stopped in absolute awe, her face glowing, her little legs jumping up and down. "Mommy," she whispered, "Mommy, mommy, mommy! It's him. Look! The Easter Bunny!"
And in that instant, I believed, too.