Friday, June 18, 2010

Those Familiar Baby Blues

There are few things in life more comforting than a big pair baby eyes staring up at you from inside of a stroller. And when those happy, sparkling eyes are paired with a toothless grin and a sometimes stuck out tongue, the combination is impossible to resist.

Today when I stepped on the Metro at Chatelet to go to Centre Pompidou, I noticed a younger woman struggling to get situated with her normal sized red stroller. The baby inside was fussing a little, but nothing alarming. So she bounced the stroller a little bit to get him to calm down, and she tried to hang a jacket over the edge of the stroller to maybe block whatever was in his visual perameters-- just typical Mom things to do to make your baby calm down. I hadn't seen her little boy yet as the stroller was facing away from me, but I could tell by his soft whimpers and almost playfully toned cries, he wasn't a pain in the butt baby I've seen a lot of lately.

But soon a few more passengers stepped on, politely moving past the woman and her baby, never looking into the stroller to note the precious cargo eyeing every one who passed by. A few bumped the stroller and quickly said, "Pardon" or "Je m'excuse" but after that, their days continued. The paper still had to be read, a metro-appropriate novel was flipped open, and iPhones were pulled out for entertainment. Since this was the first stop on the Line 11 Metro at Chatelet, I assumed a lot of the passengers had a long way to go.

When the doors shut, the Mom had the opportunity to resituate herself once everyone else had either taken a seat, or who, like me, grabbed onto a pole and just eased into the ride. As she moved the stroller around, I subtly changed my position on the train so I could peer inside to get a look at what was making such cute sounds.

I peeked around the corner of the stroller cover and was greeted by these large blue baby eyes. But these weren't just any blue eyes. Most of the time, when someone says "baby blue" you think of a very light, but brightly toned, blue. Almost like sky blue but with more color variation because it's an eye. These were not baby blue. Well, they were baby blue, but not baby blue. Instead, they had this richer quality to them, with subtle hints of grey and darker blue. But the grey helped maintain their lightness quality, rather than being a darker blue like most adults have. They were simply gorgeous.

After already being thrown off by him having such mature looking eyes, I realized the metro had suddenly become much quieter when we locked glances. His mouth closed, and he just breathed softly. Of course I smiled a little, wondering how this baby could stare at me for so long with such amazement. I couldn't tell if he was a subtly flirting baby, or if he was intrigued by me, but I could tell he was deep in thought. So I stuck my tongue out and watched as he opened his mouth a little bit as if to mimick my motion. Not quite to that age though. So then I expected a little giggle, or something along the lines of flirting. Instead he just closed his mouth again and recommenced the stare.

Almost afraid his mother would think I was staring at her child for too long, I looked away every few seconds, all the while the little one maintained his stare. I couldn't help but think it was a sign, and a great one at that. You can't ever go wrong with a pair of baby blues, so it must be a great sign. And I know in my heart it's a great sign I can carry with me.

And like I said, there are few things more comforting than a pair of baby eyes, and while that's true-- there are few things more inspirational than a sign of fate on the metro. The metro stop I got off at approached far too soon, because all I wanted to do was figure out what he was trying to tell me. But I decided I had figured out enough, waved to him goodbye and wished his mother good health as I stepped off the train and into the Parisian wind. I knew it would be a great start to an even greater afternoon.

Good ol' baby blues.

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