This past week, we took care of our 28-month-old grandson, Simon.
While at a local park a family looked like they were meeting to exchange their little girl — the mom had to go somewhere, and daddy was to take over and watch her.
I love watching dads interacting with their children, and these days I see more and more of it in the parks to which my husband and I get to take Simon. The dad and I got to talking, mostly because Simon was in the process of sort of sharing his toys with his little girl, Laleya.
The man sat down in the sand area and started to play with Simon's trucks and bucket with the little girl and there was Simon, in the middle of it all, talking to the dad. This interchange progressed to other parts of the sand park, Simon talking to the dad, wanting him to return to the sand pit.
I told Simon that the daddy had to stay with his little girl so he couldn't always go where Simon wanted him to go, but Simon persisted. Simon's mommy arrived, and this exchange continued with Simon's mom now talking to the dad and us, all the while Simon trying to get the dad's attention.
My husband and I finally had to leave but not before Simon got the dad to lift him up into his arms along with his own little girl. What a sweet picture of trust and caring this was for me and my husband and to watch. I hope we run into this dad again.
Oh, I forgot to mention, the dad was black, we are white, and Simon and his mom are really blond.
The next day, we got to take care of Simon again, and when his mommy was about to come home, I told her to come to her house and we would meet her there, not the park nor our house as is sometimes the case. Simon's mommy arrived home the same time a solicitor arrived at the door.
This friendly man gave his lengthy spiel, and our daughter-in-law patiently listened all the while Simon played at her feet and tried to get her attention as well as the man's attention. Finally a deal was closed with Simon's mommy writing a check for a subscription for some magazine while Simon watched the interchange going on between Simon's mommy and the solicitor.
Before the man left, Simon succeeded in getting his attention and, before we knew it, Simon was up in the man's arms telling him something very important. The man smiled broadly and chuckled.
Did I mention, the man was black, we are white, and Simon and his mom are really blond?
I watched with heartfelt fascination the interactions between Simon and these two men. All I can say is that I was blessed to see color-blindness in its purest form.
As a person with a Native-American background who is reflecting on the Trayvon Martin case, and its suggestion of racial profiling, I say as we grow older, we sometimes lose our color-blindness.
PATTY GWINN lives in Corona del Mar.