On a recent trip abroad, we came across language barriers. Most Americans do not bother to learn more than English. Myself included. I slept through two years of Latin. In most other countries, however, the majority of people learn English, as it is the universal language. I found myself very grateful that they took the time to learn my language. I realized what pretentious assholes we are by yelling at others to learn English while they are visiting from other places.
Having said all of that, I discovered that there is a better universal language. It’s the spirit of a child. Our little man found a kindred spirit in an old German man. Little man is 3. Old man is 88. He spoke enough English to get by, but not fluent. Certainly not enough to carry on a conversation with a 3 year old. They communicated like I’ve never seen before. Their eyes and happy souls spoke volumes. They knew what they were talking about. I’m sure they talked about cars and girls. They probably discussed avionics. Maybe they got around to Greek architecture. There were fond farewells and promises to meet again.
There were no frustrations. There was no miscommunication. There were only smiles and sparkling eyes. Sometimes our mature analytical minds over analyze and ruin the whole art of communication. We forget that our body language says more than our mouths ever will. We forget that eyes are the windows to our soul. We can fake smiles with our mouths, but not our eyes.
The spirit of our little ones is a beautiful thing. I’m so grateful that his new friend was just as amazing.