The Touch

When our children were young we were fortunate to have the option of being able to have a parent stay at home to raise our children while the other worked outside the home. My Beloved chose to focus her many talents on raising our children and I’m so glad that she did as they turned out wonderfully. She made a great full-time mom.

For the most part, I enjoyed being a part-time dad, but must admit that I missed much while I was away from my family. The story I’m about to share is one of those times.

My Beloved was one of those moms who took our kids to many interesting events, places, and activities. One of their favorite places to visit was the San Francisco Zoo.

One day, while at the zoo My Beloved took our two boys to the gorilla enclosure. A huge window separated the families of humans from those of gorillas. Our oldest son, Ben, was about four years old, and Brian was a very active one year old who was riding in his stroller at the time.

Ben was in awe of the gorillas and gently placed his little hand on the window, with his flattened palm facing them.

A giant silverback saw the gesture, walked over to the window, and gently placed his huge paw on the other side of the window exactly opposite Ben’s hand. They would have been touching if not for the window barely separating them. Ben wasn’t intimidated by the immense size of the powerful creature. As they stood there facing each other it was like a powerful connection was being made.

My Beloved said it was a magical moment that took her breath away. I feel the magic just writing about it decades later.


About russtowne

My wife and I have been married since 1979. We have 3 adult children and 5 grandchildren. I manage a wealth management firm that I founded in 2003. My Beloved is a Special Education teacher for Kindergartners and First Graders. I'm a published author of approximately 60 books in a variety of genres for grownups and children. In addition to my family, friends, investing, and writing, my passions include reading, watching classic movies, experiencing waves crashing on rocky shores, hiking in ancient redwood forests, and the beauty of kindness and nature.
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8 Responses to The Touch

  1. bulldogsturf says:

    I was lucky to be in the position to allow my wife to stay at home and raise the kids… we as the workers or bread winners have to sacrifice the odd happenings that we miss… but I did find that cvome the time off I shared what I could when I could with them… I, whilst they were still very young , gave up the city and decided to buy a farm, we moved and lived there for 5 years, or until the money ran out, but those 5 years with the kids day and night was well worth the financial loss that we had… and anyway we got back up on our feet again after selling the farm and avoiding bankruptcy by the skin of our teeth, but I never regret that time I had with the kids…

    • russtowne says:

      I’m glad that you and your children had those five years together, my friend. Money can be earned or re-earned but those years are gone forever and you all have priceless memories.


  2. This is a wonderful story, Russ. Makes me think of the video I saw a while back of a family that had a *very* close ‘live’ encounter with a family of gorillas in Uganda. It is *incredible,* and there’s no glass partition here…. , Warmly, Lori

  3. That would have been wonderful captured on camera…however I can see the picture in my mind anyway..Diane

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