a father dances with his daughter
August 4, 2002
From Overheard in NYC observes a young girl and her father waiting for the subway:
Then they begin to dance: he takes her hand and puts his other arm around her waist, holding her firmly. They two-step neatly down the platform: he swings her out and spins her around, she twirls and comes back to him. You can tell that they dance together a lot, they are regular dancing partners. She grew up dancing with him, first in his arms, later standing on his toes, with him holding her up. Now they are perfectly matched partners, but soon she probably won't dance with him at all, anymore.
When I see my sister sigh in frustration at my dad's overbearing advice, and I see my father stare blankly at my sister's stubbornness, I find it enchanting. That's their dance, and they've choreographed it well, perfected now that she's an adult. They might be exasperated, but it's them, it wouldn't be their dance if it weren't contrary and ornery and brilliant and loving. And it makes me love them.