Notice the coat. What is missing? Here is a cropped earlier photograph:
We go for a lovely walk in Rockcreek Park in Maryland. It is very cold and the creek is half frozen. My son goes down to the creek and throws rocks on the ice.
The ice makes wonderful sounds and the rocks mostly do not go through the ice. It is in beautiful patterns.
We get cold and are ready to head back. My son realizes that he has lost the button. We spend some time looking for a brown button in brown leaves. No button. We are colder.
When I look at the photographs later, they confirm that the button was lost on that walk!
The next day my ex-husband’s father’s second spouse comes to brunch. She is the last of the six grandparents. We have a lovely brunch. She is a potter and a landscape architect and is helping my son and daughter in law with their garden and yard. After brunch we walk back to the creek, keeping our eyes peeled for the button. She has a button collection but not that button. He might find one on the internet. Or he could contact Pendleton, since it is a Pendleton coat. Very handsome.
At the creek we search in the leaves and along the water, all of us. No button. I cross the little bridge, seeing a lump on the ice the right size and color. I clamber down the bank. “No,” I say, “Oh! Yes! Found it!” The brown button is sitting on the ice. It must have shot across the ice when he bent down to pick up a rock! “Hooray!” we all say. A small miracle for the season. Happy winter holidays and prayers for those lost.