The Bottom of a Well

While walking around today I came across a group of four year olds yelling into a wide grated manhole cover. There were three or four women standing in a half-circle behind them, smiling – the kids’ pre-school teachers I assume. I could hear one of the kids crying, but I couldn’t pick out right away which one it was. I tried to piece together what was happening, but got a little disoriented when I noticed that the crying wasn’t coming from any of the yelling kids. I panicked for a disoriented moment, imagining a kid had somehow gotten down there. Were the other kids heckling him?

It all cleared up a second later, when I got a little closer. The kids were hollering into the pit under the sidewalk, listening to their voices echo back up at them. The source of the crying was a little boy who I hadn’t seen before, standing with one of the adults crying about the noise.

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