The following is a guest post from a dear friend of mine. Thank you, Tracy, for lending your talent and insight to the Maven’s Blog.
Saturday night I took my two-year old grandson and seven month old granddaughter to dinner at a nice local restaurant in an upscale suburb. Many families with small children frequent this restaurant so, although the staff is prepared for the ‘challenges’ of little diners, I recognize and appreciate their kindnesses. Our server was a woman who appeared to be about my age (61). She could not have been nicer. After two high chairs were delivered to the table, she lifted one child into a chair and I lifted the other. Children’s menus were provided. She cooed over the baby and caressed the toddler. Orders were placed and she ensured that the food was delivered quickly. Hungry toddlers can be cranky as grandmothers know. Half of the food on the toddler’s plate went into his mouth and the other half, the floor. I apologized. She tsked. I heard about her family including grandchildren in Peru. In addition to being helpful, patient and understanding, our server could also be “labeled” an immigrant.
After a lovely dinner the check was paid, and I prepared to leave. I scooped up the baby and struggled to free her big brother from his perch. An African-American gentleman from an adjacent table rushed to my aid, leaving his meal and family of three. I gratefully accepted his assistance. He looked down at Luke and asked if Luke minded his help. Luke acceded. The gentleman lifted Luke out of his chair and then asked if he could help us out to my car. Having already lent me such gracious assistance, I felt I couldn’t ask for anything further so I politely declined.
I know our country suffers from institutionalized racism and problems stemming from illegal immigration. I agree that we need to first acknowledge and then work to solve these challenges. But on one Saturday evening in Southlake, Texas, a Peruvian immigrant, an old white woman and a nice black man’s interactions showed me that we don’t need to make America “great again.” America, with its varied and serious problems, is already great.