The greatest joy – the smile of a baby

Little children are worth watching – better still, worth growing up with – as they look, point at (always with the correct finger), and talk about everything in their lives. Some are more placid than others; but can be stimulated to interact.

For instance, when bored-looking children in their prams approach me on a street, by simply looking at them, they can be made aware that they are being observed. By continuing to hold this visual connection, while their mums are usually talking to a friend, or are obviously not aware of this non-verbal connection, as the prams approach me, I make a soft sound with my tongue clicking on the roof of my mouth. The reaction of the children is instantaneous. They smile broadly with delight, while still looking at me as we pass.

The mothers who are aware of what happened will also smile. What mother can reject a stranger’s appreciation of her beautiful child. I have even obtained a smile from a little boy who had been shouting at his mother from his pram; he had become curious at this stranger smiling at him, and closed his mouth. After his smile, there was not a peep out of him.

However, the most beautiful smiles are from babies. There are obviously a variety of baby smiles, but the one showing absolutely pure love cannot be bettered.

One morning I was photographing my baby daughter. She was so young that she to be propped up with a cushion behind her, and with a cushion on each side of her. She watched and listened while I focused the camera at her and took a few shots. Then, through the doorway came her mother, speaking to her lovingly. Our baby became excited, and tried valiantly to move towards her mother.

Her smile of happiness as she looked at her mother was splendid, memorable and infectious! It was absolutely beautiful.