We’ve been going to the Starling Meat Market for years. It is one of the places in the neighborhood where we are greeted by name. And that is always a nice feeling. Because even in a large community like ours, people still take the time to know you by name.
He wore khakis and a tan jacket zippered all the way up – the collar of his button down shirt peeking out. The laces on his black rubber sole shoes were neatly tied. His thin white hair was combed back. And around his wrinkled alabaster wrist was a silver bracelet with his name and two phone numbers.
His name was “Timothy.”
His question caught me off guard but I smiled and told him Norrin’s age.
“2006. He was born in 2006. When is his birthday?”
I told him the date and within seconds Timothy told me that Norrin was born on a Friday. He then asked about my birthday, then Joseph’s. And he told us the day we were born.
Timothy then asked where we born. And with each answer, he told us the address and nearest train station. In between all of our questions, Timothy asked Benny how loud the lion roared.
After about ten minutes of talking, Timothy walked out without saying goodbye.
I knew in our brief interaction that Timothy had some kind of special need – maybe even autism. Our meeting left me with mixed emotions. I don’t meet older people with special needs often, but when I do – it makes me think about Norrin’s future.