Amy and I decided to take the kids to Mount Trashmore for the 4th of July fireworks display on Saturday night. It was a great day, clear and cool for early July. We arrived early and parked far away for a quick exit from the area once the show was over, a la Clark Griswold.
We climbed to the top of the hill and the kids chased a finger rocket back and forth.
We had noticed earlier that Bob McDonnell was talking to people around the park. We just kept on walking. While we sat watching the kids play, Amy and I noticed that the “McDonnell Group” was moving around. We jokingly told Savannah that she needed to go ask Bob McDonnell how he was going to get teachers pay raises so we could go to Disney World again.
We snickered and remarked to each other how very humorous we are, but Bob and his entourage continued to move, and they headed in our direction. Before we knew it, he was right in front of us. I whipped out my cell phone and quickly captured the following video.
Surprisingly, Savannah did not freeze and forget her question. In case you missed what she said, it was, “How are you going to get teachers a raise?”
He had a good prepared answer for her, but what I thought was great is that he got down on one knee to speak to her. He made eye contact with her, not the adults, and tried to respectfully talk to her. I am sure that much of what he said went right over her head, but most adult questions have adult answers. In any case, it is rare to see adults act that way around children, usually they are polite but dismissive.
I understand that he is a politician and that his behavior was not completely exceptional in the way he spoke to Savannah, but as her father, I was impressed.
It was a great day at the park that ended with some fantastic fireworks. And now, thanks to Bob McDonnell, we have a nice family story to tell and retell for years.