On a buffety, blustery early summer day, when the news was bad and the sky turned yellow, a strange thing happened in the town where I live. That morning, two grandmothers who had never met, not even by accident, put on their summer Sunday clothes, their most comfortable shoes, their favorite sun hats, walked to the park in the center of town.
Now that, of course, wasn’t the strange part because lots of people walk to the park, especially in summer.
It’s what the grandmothers did after they got there that set the whole town on its collective ear.
What, you ask, could two grandmothers do that would cause such a buzz on a buffety, blustery early summer day? Well, just wait till you hear.
The grandmothers who had never met, not even by accident, walked past the river and past the rose garden and past the playground to the center of the big grassy area that faces the town square. And there they stood.
Not looking at squirrels.
Not munching on coconut candy.
In actual point of fact, not anything at all.
Ryan Reilly was the first to notice. He’s the busboy at Beever Brothers Café that overlook the partk. Every time he clared coffee cups and water glasses from the table by the window, he saw the grandmothers.
3What do you think they’re doing?” he asked Willie and Erma Beans, who always sit at the table by the window.
“Dunno,” said Willie.
“Maybe the’re waiting for someone,” Erna offered.
“Mighty long wait,” said Ryan.
Robin the waitress bustled by with a coffeepot. “Maybe they’re pretending to be statues,” she said. “People do that, you know.”.
Sue Ann Renfrew got up and looked out the window. “Maybe it’s a Chinese meditation exercise.”
“Well, if that’s exercise, it’s the kind I could get into, “ said Leslie Plunkett, who, wither five-year-old daughter, Polly, joined Sue Ann at the window.
For several minutes everyone in Beever Brothers Café watched the grandmothers stand in the center of the big grassy area. No one could come up with a reasonable explanation for their behavior. No one, that is, until a very little voice said, “I know what they’re doing.” Leslie looked down at her topsy-haired daughter.
“You do?” said Willie and Erna and Sue Ann and Leslie and Ryna Reilly and Robin the waitress.
“Yes,” she said, suddenly shy from all the attention.
“Well then tell us,” said Ryan Reilly.
Polly took a gulpy breath and announced quite matter-of-factly, as a matter of fact: “They’re saving the world.”
From: The Great Silent Grandmother Gathering; A story for anyone who thinks she can’t save the world; Sharon Mehdi.