The woman sitting near me is a mother. I know because she is carrying a child with beautiful dark eyes. The eyes are all I can see.
Tiny hands wrap around mother’s waist. Tiny toes spread as far as they can, brushing against each other in their suspension.
This gaze somehow haunts me. Burqa baby’s eyes don’t return my smile and her hands do not return my wave. I am the other. This mother is engrossed in her doings: screen, journal, computer. She doesn’t see me staring – or even snapping a photo. I hesitate and then, secretly, I reach over to touch these tiny pink toes. Just to offer a moment of touch.
Are we so engaged in our media, entranced by it’s siren song, that we carry our children like packages on our backs? Do we know we are denying them interaction with their world while we enjoy artificial interaction in our own?