Rushmore

A breeze wrapped the flag around its post.  In that warm summer afternoon only the tips fluttered back and forth and the wire clanked against the metal pole holding it in the air. Other flags waved around, but this one hung up there, red, white, and blue.

“They’re smaller than I thought,” she said, looking up at the faces.

“They’re not that small, really.”

“I know but I thought they were going to be bigger.”

He looked at her but she kept staring at the giant faces carved into the mountain.  People milled around, taking photographs and smiling with big fake grins.  Hardly anyone spoke the same language.

“Where did all these people come from, anyway,” he said.

“I don’t know.”

“I don’t think anyone is from around here.  Nobody is speaking English.”

“This place is weird,” she said.

“I like it.”

“I guess.”

“Let’s get a picture,” the boy said to the girl.

“Okay.”

He walked over to a lady standing there and handed her the camera, he walked back and they stood awkwardly next to each other.  She looked up at his face, back to the woman with the camera, and back to him again.

“Ready?” the woman asked.

The girl put her arm around the boys waist.  He hesitated, and lifted his arm up and placed it over her shoulder.

“Smile,” the woman said.

The camera clicked.

“Thanks,” he said, walking back to the woman.

“What a beautiful place,” she said.

“Yeah.  It’s something.”

The girl was sitting on the wall now, her back towards the mountain and the faces.  He came back and leaned on his elbows looking at them.  She kicked him in the side.  Not a real kick, but soft one just to get his attention.

“What?”

“I don’t know.”

“They’re pretty big,” he said.

She looked at him, then turned around to see the faces again.

“Maybe,” she paused.  The warm summer breeze came through.  “No.  I don’t think so.”

He shook his head.  The metal wire rang against the pole and the big flag unwrapped some.  He turned to her, still shaking his head; a sly little smile came across her face.