I’m having a fantastic day.
I really am! And this is in spite of the fact that today marks the end of Spring Break. And I had to get out the door at the crack of dawn* to drive A. to Advanced Orchestra. And I hardly got any sleep last night thanks to a certain five-year-old who concocted more issues than I knew were humanly possible. And I ran out of my beloved Italian roast coffee. Oh, and I got hailed on. HAILED ON. For the love…
(Apollo’s happy to inside– and pouncing on window raindrops.)
Anyway, despite ALL of that, I am in a simply splendid mood.
Why? Why on earth would I be feeling all lovely and smiley when so many unpleasant events have unfolded?
You might think I’m going to give you some answer about God or devotionals or prayer or faith at this point. I’m not. Those are all wonderful and important things as far as I’m concerned, but that’s not actually what I’m pinpointing today…
As I dropped my son off for his early, early music group, I waited in the standard drop-off lane and, you know what? Everyone did just exactly as they were supposed to. They took turns. They moved efficiently. They pulled forward. It was beautiful.
I drove down the road to the elementary school and a bus’s lights went on as the stop sign came out. I slowed to an easy stop and waited, hanging back a bit so as not to block an intersection. After picking up a little girl at her stop, the bus driver flipped on his turn signal to go onto that road and flashed me a big thumbs up. It made me smile.
Crossing the school parking lot with my girls later in the morning, I ran into the on-site police officer and beamed a smile at him through the raindrops. “Good morning!” he called out with an enthusiastic wave.
Dodging hail in the grocery store parking lot, I was fairly skipping because I was so excited about scoring more of the discounted cinnamon maple bread that my family adores. An old man tipped his hat to me and gave me a little salute. I flashed a toothy grin right back at him– I couldn’t hide my good mood!
And, finally, winding my way back up the steep, curvy road that leads to home, I saw the “utility work ahead” signs and prepared myself to stop. And wait, if need be. I did have to wait– probably less than a minute– and then was waved ahead by a man clad head to toe in heavy yellow rain gear. As I drove past, he gave me cheery nod and a wave and I did the same.
I’m home now, groceries put away, and wet clothes swapped for dry.
And I’m still smiling.
It was an ordinary morning, by all accounts. Dropped off children, got gas, ran to the store… there’s nothing exciting there. If anything, it was on the unpleasant side due to extra stops and nasty weather.
But I’d call it a great morning.
Why? What could make a plain, boring day so bright and fun?
It’s really so simple: the people.
Tiny little gestures making a whole world of difference. Could it be that easy? Following rules, smiling, waving, and greeting… do these things really set the whole tone?
I’m going to suggest that they do– that they can.
No one did anything amazing for me this morning. I have no dramatic stories to share with you. Just ordinary people doing seemingly ordinary things…
that add up to extraordinary in a world that’s too often distracted and self-absorbed.
So smile. Wave. Give a thumbs-up or a high five or a cheery little nod.
It’s the little things that make a big difference.
*perhaps a slight exaggeration