Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Culture Club

Some of my best Miss Pickles memories come from what the children say to me. I recently did a double-header, two gigs in one day, both birthday parties for little boys. The first event was held in the clubhouse of a nice subdivision; my clients, a stunning young family from India. I say stunning because they were lavishly adorned in rich silks and vibrant emerald, turquoise, and magenta fabrics, often trimmed in gold or sequins or gems. And not just the husband and wife … everyone from the children to the grandparents looked absolutely beautiful. Most of the men wore ornate silk tunics, the women, with glorious black hair, glowed in cultural garb, some with gems on their foreheads. The little girls wore bright dresses and such adorable shoes, I wondered where they shopped.

While many of the children seemed shy and hid behind their mother or father as I twisted a balloon for them, one surprisingly tall four-year-old came boldly. She smiled her magnificent smile and asked for a swan. She began helping me by staging the clubhouse with the flower, the heart pole, the teddy bear I just made. I painted a pretty butterfly on her cheek, to match her emerald outfit, and kept making balloons for her little brother, who enjoyed squeezing the life out of them. After the first hour, when I had a lull in shy customers wanting balloons or body art, my little friend sat with me for a chat. Flat out, she asked, “Do you know that we're from India?” I told her, “Yes,” waiting for her to ask how I knew, but she never did. She simply smiled, satisfied that I knew. I marveled at her inherent pride in her heritage, love for her family, and generosity of heart. She demonstrated a quality that reminded me of what Jesus said in Matthew 19:14--“Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these."

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