This morning when I was climbing Harlem Hill in Hamilton Heights, named after Alexander Hamilton, our first Secretary of the Treasury, because he lived there, I came upon a little old lady pushing a tiny grocery cart.
She was 5 feet tall, if she was that, in a yellow rain slicker though no rain was expected, and a bright red scarf tied tightly around her head.
She moved so slowly, I could have run up and down that hill forty times before she made it to the top yet like a turtle, making headway step by step.
“How are you?” I asked over my shoulder since we were the only ones out at that time.
“Veddy good,” she said, with a Slavic face ruddy and full. She made me think of my Polish grandmother who too had cheeks like apples never needing rouge.
“Nice day, isn’t it?”
“Yis…but vain veddy soon.”
“Really? I thought it would be sunny today.” She shook her head in firm disagreement.
“Well, have a good day.”
She waved me off with a dimpled smile.
Don’t you know not ten minutes later the skies opened? Not for very long, just long enough to make her right.
As I stood beneath a huge Maple tree trying to stay dry, I thought of her and wondered if she had yet made it up the hill.