As we walked past the storefronts of Louis Vuitton and Neiman Marcus and Rolex, the greeting was consistent—and nearly constant.
Last week I went shopping with Moira Rose.
Or at least her two-year-old impersonator.
Walking through Atlanta’s Lennox Mall with my niece (and goddaughter) Isha, I did my best to keep up with the fashion trends and the greeting line. When every mannequin is your audience, that line can be long.
Kids are curious creatures—both in their paparazzi-flash interests and our attempts to understand them. I hadn’t seen Isha in six months, so the curiosity meter ran hot.
When she wasn’t creating her own red carpet, she was hitting the water. (Do you know the way to Saint-Tropez?) Her swim lesson breakthrough last week was floating all on her own. Back to the water, eyes to the sky, courage down her spine.
“Hope floats, bébé!”
And it’s often the kiddos who lead the hope-bobbing water aerobics. One conversation with a little one may provide a better twenty-year plan than, say, a second re-airing of the nightly news.
During our last visiting session, a Sunday morning, Isha followed us through Atlanta’s Sweet Auburn neighborhood, up to the famed Ebenezer Baptist Church. The sanctuary, the tomb, the nonviolent principles — they’re all on poignant display. Two blocks of Martin Luther King, Jr. in memoriam but of his life.
But another image danced in my head.
“Let’s play, bébé!”
Down the street from Dr. King’s memorial is Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, the oldest Black Catholic church in Atlanta. Little Martin was born and raised on the same block, a few houses from the school parking lot. And it was there that Martin Luther King, Jr. played as a child, running around, making new friends, learning to speak so others might listen.
“I have a dream, bébé!”
Little Isha and little Martin, two Atlanta kids growing into this world. Running around the Sweet Auburn blocks. Hope for the future with a glimpse in the present.
Seeing them together was worth the trip.
“Til next time, bébé!”
To conclude our Sunday morning, we opted for a twenty-minute-wait breakfast. Better than the best pancakes in the world (per the NY Times), we dined across the street from the Oakland Cemetery—the final resting place of Bobby Jones and Kenny Rogers. Who knew? Well, know when to hold ‘em and know when to fold ‘em (and let your sister wait in line for brunch while you go explorin’).
Possibly the greatest athlete in sports history passed away this week. And he hailed from Monroe. William Felton Russell left Louisiana at the age of eight, but we can still claim him. Bill Simmons (no fan of our Pellies but quite the fan of Bill) provides a great, long-form interview with the great Celtic.