|Don't let go|
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I was on my last walkabout of my visit here, a quick loop through the sweltering city before I headed back to the hotel, checked out, tossed my luggage in the back of a Buick minivan and headed for the airport for the inevitable gauntlet of check-in, security and still more security.
As I walked toward the hotel, I randomly shot people, any people, on the crowded overhead walkway that encircled one of the main intersections of this sprawling, often overwhelming city. This was the first truly nice day after a string of grey, rainy ones, and it seemed everyone had emerged to take it all in. This little girl stopped me dead in her tracks, as in that one tiny moment on a muggy afternoon, I saw a connection in that little hand that reminded me why we have kids in the first place.
She won't always hold onto her mom's hand as she's doing here. But for that brief window of childhood where the world revolves around her parents to an almost complete degree, I'm sure mom appreciates the handhold as much as little one does. Because it's only a matter of time before she walks on her own, too old/cool/independent/distant to make the connection to the person who shepherded her from munchkinhood to adulthood.
On this bright Shanghai day, it taught me that we're all more alike than not, and no matter how old we might be, we all need each other, hands and all, more than we'd like to admit.
Your turn: What's this little girl thinking?