In our neighborhood, there is a significant population of young and old who push shopping carts around. For most of these folks, the carts are filled with their belongings–they are their “homes” so to speak. For others, they are more about commerce, filled to overflowing with the recycling they are able to collect from the neighborhood trash cans. In fact, whenever we have overnight guests in our home on a Sunday night, we warn them that they will hear a fairly steady stream of noise throughout the night and early morning before the trash trucks come: we call it the shopping cart parade.
We do our best to meet and greet as many of these folks as we can, though many of them seem to come and go in the shadows. Sometimes David has his cart with him when we visit with him. And often when we play at the park, there is any number of folks asleep in or next to their baskets. Whenever we walk, we are sure to pass at least one neighbor who greets us as we wheel past each other.
Mercy has a little baby stroller and she has always loved pushing it around our apartment filled with different dolls and toys. An old GI Joe doll, stripped of half of his fatigues, is probably her favorite passenger. But lately, she has a new obsession. Every morning she wakes up and first on her agenda is hanging any possible bag or basket or purse over the handles of her stroller, wheeling around the house, then coming back to the toy corner for more stuff to put in and on her “basket.” She is hilarious about it–by noon the stroller can barely stand upright without tipping over. I don’t know if she is imitating what she sees every day when we walk outside, or if this is just a normal almost two-year old impulse.