That’s what it felt like at the Miami Book Fair. Tens of thousands of people, moving easily around the designated venues on the astonishing urban campus of Miami-Dade College. Notebooks, schedules and sunglasses grasped in hand, looking
toward the next event. Joyce Carol Oats! Taylor Branch! John Hodgman! (John Hodgman?) Some poetry perhaps. Or the star turn – for which I had a splendid seat – Al Gore himself. The uber celebrity of the young scholastic set. (Gotta admit, I was pretty darn star struck myself.)
No frowns, no angry faces, sunshine and smiles. And then, icing on my cake – a spontaneous break dance performance on a sidewalk in front of me. Six or seven teenage boys – volunteers at the Fair with their bright yellow teeshirts – removed their badges and glasses and put down bags and ipods and phones in a pile. And to the beat of a music they pulled from the air to their ears only, began to dance and leap and walk on air. And after a few minutes a little girl, no more than four years old moved into their space and without missing a beat they surrounded her in a circle and made her their only audience. And she smiled and clapped and was soon trying to do what they were doing.
Don’t think I’ll forget that one soon.