This one time I was walking down Boston’s lovely and well-to-do Charles St. in the Beacon Hill neighborhood. I was walking absentmindedly along before a little girl stepped happily into my path and continued excitedly skipping up the street in front of me. She couldn’t have been more than seven years old and was bouncing around and blasting everyone she passed a real show-stopper of a smile. Just happy as a clam, this little girl. And then I see why. She’s wearing the prettiest little pink dress with white trim and she’s carrying an enormous chocolate birthday cake. Ok. She’s headed to a birthday party, maybe even her own. She’s a tiny little thing and every one of her skips is about ⅓ of each of my steps so I’m right up behind her and can practically feel the trembling excitement coming off of her waves. Then it happens. Her tiny little adorable wingtips catch one of the uneven bricks of Charles St. and she tumbles forward onto the ground, landing pretty pink frock-first right onto the cake. I’ve never seen the full spectrum of human emotion exhibited in one human being in such a short amount of time. From sheer unadulterated joy, to crushed beneath the weight of life’s mighty reality-boot.
I’d like to say it wasn’t hilarious, but I’d be a dirty, dirty liar.
How that little girl felt, in that moment, laying splayed like starfish, chest down on that chocolatey mound of disappointment, is how we felt when Hatfield’s closed.