He sat with a solid “thump” onto a metal bench on Main St., as I was shooting macro shots of nearby flowers and honeybees. He was a large and solid man, but his eyes were heavy. He pulled out a sweet smelling cigar, stuck it in his mouth, struck a match and puffed.
As the blue-grey smoke whirled about his face and head, he smiled softly to himself, grateful for the peace of the morning, or simply releasing another of his burdens back to the world. He intrigued me.
I asked if I could take his picture, and he responded yes, “Though I can’t see why. I’m just an old man.” I told him that he didn’t need to do anything but be himself, and continue doing whatever made him comfortable.
We sat an talked for a few minutes, sharing a bench, he with a cigar, myself with a cigarette. He told some of his war stories. I can’t for the life of me remember which war, and I seriously doubt that it would matter. These eyes have seen many things. Some wonderful, some historical, and some atrocious. I can hardly envision the things he has seen. I can hardly comprehend the things he has yet to see.
He said it was an honor to share a fine morning and a good conversation. I assured him that the Honor was mine, entirely.