In getting to the office in the morning I generally walk over a footbridge that crosses six lanes of traffic. The footbridge is relatively unique. There are multiple entries on each side. Additionally, there are actually two different paths on the overpass and there is a row of shops in the middle of the paths. The hard walkway and glass walls ensure that clicks of high heel shoes are heard by everyone. Individuals tend to walk slowly because the two paths and shops are kept cool.
In the past few days, I have been caught off guard twice; someone has been humming as they walked. Given the pitch, my guess is that one was a man, the other a woman. What has struck me was the shared feeling that you could feel. They were happy individuals, filled with hope, and seemingly at ease.
It has been awhile since I listened to someone hum in a public place. In both situations I tried to zero in on the individual the sound was coming from. I did not figure it out on either occasion. What I was left was with an observation and more questions than answers.
My observation was in the shared way I would describe the unknown individuals. I would describe the sound as the answer to the person wanting to say the following statement only with humming. “I’m thanking you, God, out loud in the streets, singing your praises in town and country.” (Psalm 57.9)
Most of the time Singapore and New York have far more in common than differences. People are usually in a hurry. Most of the time there is something to be done, a goal to be reached, a task underway. After work you may find individuals relaxing, but rarely during the day. Despite looking and being on alert, I have not identified any hummers. What I am left with is the memory of home in my mind. It is so strong that I feel like humming myself.
To whoever left the sound of hope and happiness, thank-you! The gift carries on.