The Best Thing This Week

The Best Thing That Happened This Week: Into the Light

A world desperate for good news gets some. For once.


Thai rescue teams arrange water pumping system at the entrance to a flooded cave complex where 12 boys and their soccer coach were trapped since June 23, in Mae Sai, Chiang Rai province, northern Thailand. (Royal Thai Navy via AP)

Go ahead and fret about Brett Kavanaugh and Roe v. Wade and NATO and the trade war with China and Bob Mueller and the one-on-one with Putin and border babies without parents and, oh hell, why not, your number of Instagram followers. Or take a moment, take a breath, take another breath, longer, slower, and remember: All those boys and their soccer coach were lost, stranded for weeks in the dark, in a cave deep underground, surrounded by water. Somehow, they were found. Somehow — by the grace of God or karma or the Buddha — they defied what seemed a certain tragic end and were carried, while the world waited, breathless, into freedom again. Every one of us had a little piece of our hearts in there with them while we went about our ordinary business; wherever we were, a scrap of us, the best of us — our humanity — was huddled beside them, whispering: Don’t be afraid. Maybe you’d have to be a brash 12-year-old soccer player not to give up hope, to go on believing—and then to ask your rescuers about the freaking World Cup. There’s a moral to this, somewhere. All we know is: They were lost. Now they’re found. They’re safe. They came home.