The small boy, the tiny boy, set off across the grass towards the duckpond, and I lumbered after him, retrieving him before he hurtled into the icy water. Scotland was not warm this Easter Monday. ‘Small children have such joy,’ I remarked to my companion. ‘Before life knocks it out of them’ she rejoined a little gloomily.
And suddenly I knew the answer – not to the Universe, which I already knew to be 42. Rather to the question posed earlier. The question of why I gave up good sleep on Easter Sunday, and appeared somewhat dozy at lunch when I could just have had a leisurely breakfast and really enjoyed the day.
There is not one simple answer to be given, but try this for size. I went to that place, a place some 22 miles from where I live, at that time, seven am, and after feeding my livestock, and walking the dog, and on the morning the clocks changed, I went there because I knew that there I would find adults showing every sign of just that same joy in being. That is a very precious thing.