I saw a lady who was being followed by a butterfly.
It wasn’t like in a feminine-hygiene commercial. She wasn’t skipping through a meadow with flowers in her hair ala Mother Nature.
This was an ordinary looking woman, obviously taking a break from the office. A brisk walk on her lunch hour – time to get in shape. It was right here in town.
The butterfly was a bright, egg-yolk yellow against the gray sidewalk. The woman was a drab moth, clad in typical office worker plumage – navy pants and brown shirt. Sensible, black Stride-Rite shoes with a crepe, wedge sole made little noise as they hit the pavement.
Her brow was furrowed, mulling over a delinquent voucher or account that just wouldn’t reconcile. Her brown, brown shoulder-length hair swung gently in counterpoint to the employee ID on a lanyard around her neck. The butterfly meandered up and down, gently side-to-side, but kept pace and a consistent three-foot distance behind her.
It might have been a pet. There may have been an invisible spiders’ silk leash connecting her to the butterfly. But she seemed oblivious to it.
Did this say something about her – this strange ability to attract butterflies? Perhaps that flitting, floating bit of June sunshine reflected her true spirit.
Or maybe they just happened to be traveling in the same direction.
She plodded along, stolid and stoic. It was almost time to head back to her cubicle.
I drove by slowly, picking up speed as the light at the corner turned green and the woman and the butterfly got smaller and smaller in my rearview mirror.