The girl had a clock and that clock was very special. Its outer casing was brass, its face ivory with gilded numbers at the twelve, three, six, and nine. It had all the components a good clock out to have – a loop for a chain, the best cogs and gears in its clicking metal guts, two steel arms to indicate time – but it also had something no other clock in the world could claim. Along the top, made of fine brass and polished to a glinty shine, were two additional winding knobs. It was her job to turn those knobs.
People often claimed that time dragged when you wanted it to pass quickly. They said it flew by when you wanted to relish a moment. They spoke in metaphor, unknowing that there was a person whose very job it was to bend time to those specifications. The girl sat in her workshop and waited for the precious moments. She waited for wedding days and Disneyland to propel time forward. First dances, last goodbyes, and kisses in the rain – all of these things were rushed thanks to her turns upon the first knob. The second knob she reserved for other things, like waiting in line, meetings, classrooms, and four o’clock in the afternoon. She slowed everything to a stand still then, making sixty minutes feel like an ocean of time.
Her job wasn’t to ruin lives or deny anyone their happiest days. The girl in the workshop with her magic clock taught a lesson for those smart enough to heed it. All moments – big and small, fast or slow – should be respected for the gifts they are. Moments are experiences, and experiences are memories, and memories are trophies to be cherished. Appreciate what you have while you have it, and savor the slowness in between. Every moment is precious because every moment is life.