On Thursday, many people who had hoped that Hillary Clinton would be the 45th president of the United States were still reeling from the news of Donald Trump’s victory.
Margot Gerster was one of those people. Feeling “heartbroken” at the election results, the young mum from upstate New York decided to take her baby daughter Phoebe and dog for a hike, as a way of taking her mind off things – only to bump right into her favoured presidential candidate.
Clinton was walking her own dog with her husband, Bill, when she ran into the Gersters in the woods in Chappaqua.
“We were the only ones there and it was so beautiful and relaxing,” explained Gerster in a post on Facebook, which has since been deleted. “As we were leaving, I heard a bit of rustling coming towards me and as I stepped into the clearing there she was, Hillary Clinton and Bill with their dogs doing exactly the same thing as I was.
“I got to hug her and talk to her and tell her that one of my most proudest moments as a mother was taking Phoebe with me to vote for her,” Gerster continued.
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After Bill snapped a photo of the two women and baby Phoebe, Gerster said that Hillary “hugged me and thanked me and we exchanged some sweet pleasantries and then I let them continue their walk.”
Gerster said that she shared the photo on Facebook because she “found it to be a very encouraging moment”.
“I hope that people who felt heartbroken by the election that this is some sort of comfort – or at least puts a smile on their face for however brief a moment,” she told BuzzFeed News.
“That’s how I felt. I couldn’t stop smiling afterwards. Considering that there were a lot of tears, it was pretty wonderful to go from that to this.”
She added that Clinton “couldn’t have been any kinder or more welcoming.”
As a woman who’s taken more knocks than most – and always, always got back up and kept fighting – we shouldn’t be surprised that Clinton was out and about so soon after the election, nor that she was the epitome of graciousness in the flesh. But we still, somehow, feel a little choked up.
Main image: Margot Gerster/Facebook.