To Rita

On my way to work, my commute takes me past a public school and every day I see the crossing guards out.  This morning, I had a sudden flashback of a face I haven’t seen in over a decade – my old crossing guard, Rita.

I haven’t seen Rita since I left for university.  She hadn’t been my guard since I left public school five year prior, but I remember her face.  She knew my name, which I suppose is what I remember most.  And she was always kind.

I suppose, as a child, I didn’t fully grasp how important she and the other guards were.  The roads we crossed weren’t very busy, and I was used to crossing the road on my own, but she was always there; she used her super-powers to stop traffic.

Now, I appreciate what these volunteers do.  How important they are and the value of what they protect.  That they stand stoically in inclement weather five days a week during the school year.

Maybe that’s why I remember her face now.  And her smile.

I don’t know where she is now, but I secretly hope Rita’s still out making an impression on others, and keeping children safe.

Take care, Rita.

~Ryan

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