Take a hot and steamy summer day, add children and water and you have a hilarious show. It was about 95 degrees in Tokyo when these children began playing the in the fountain. It did not matter to them that they did not have on bathing suits or even have a towel. They didn’t care that thousands of tourists would walk by and watch them play. They seemed unaffected that their parents were waiting in the shade. They were hot and the fountain was cool, so let the fun begin. You can imagine the shrilling screams of joy and excitement as the water bubbled out, squirted unexpectedly and drenched the kids to the bone.
As we walked by all the people around had smiles on their faces. The adults giggled and laughed as the children ran to and fro through the spouts. I caught the eye of one mother and she gave me the nod, smiled, then put her hand to her mouth as we both could not help but laugh at a child getting pelted in the face with an unexpected blast of water. At first the baby was startled and didn’t know how to react, stood there for a moment processing what just happened, then they jumped in delight and ran towards more water. As I felt the sweat run down my back, I envied that baby and wanted to join the fun.
I have witnessed this same adventure with children and water back home in Atlanta. It is universal for children to play in the water on a summer afternoon. And it is universal for mothers and fathers, grandparents and relations to all stand by and enjoy the show. Every adult watching had just as much fun as the children without the experience of leaving with soggy underwear. Everyone laughs, everyone shouts, everyone envies the cool fun. Everyone lets the elements of life fade into the wind while watching children exude unbridled joy in the water. For this brief time there was no war, no hunger, no sorrow or pain. There were no borders or politics, no arguments or family disputes. There were no clocks or timelines, to do items or laundry to fold. Dinner didn’t matter and the logistics of getting the wet ones home didn’t concern anyone. It was a perfect way to spend a hot and muggy afternoon, even if you were not the one getting wet.