Cold and rainy. Blurgh. Better, though, than the foot of snow my brother said he was expecting up his bit of that northeast corridor.
Up, I saw just gray, and splat splat splat. I have always thought that sunroofs are wasted on the sun. They are best for cloudless nights and rainy days.
Left, I saw the rolling green acres of the USDA farm labs. A steady rain looks to be in the right place on top of fields of grass. Whatever grows on those hills, I thought, was well nourished today.
Right, I saw an old brick building. A shallow door stoop. A person (man?) partially obscured, resting (sleeping?) (living?) in the doorway. His roof was borrowed from another failed empire a half mile down: a tall, narrow sign of the sort somebody is paid minimum wage to stand in numbing precipitation and wave at the eyes of pre-Christmas shopping motorists. Store Closing / Everything Must Go / Fixtures / Liquidation Prices. A driving rain on a particle board roof-replacement just looks cruel. Whomever crouched under that sign, I thought…and with my thought left unfinished, I felt only sadness and dismay.
I couldn’t reach him from a middle lane of a six lane road. And the light was about to turn green. And really, I didn’t know if he needed anything. And the only food item I had was actually a drink, in a glass bottle. Can’t chuck that across two lanes of cars. And I didn’t know if he’d want it. And I didn’t know if he was awake to notice the gesture. And really, I didn’t know if he was a he. In that moment, I didn't know anything right about anything.
But there I was warm and dry on my mediocre errand on a blah but really-nothing-to-complain-about day, and rain that looks bucolic, even hopeful, on the verdant test fields looks so disheartening on the plastic-wrapped feet of the person taking shelter behind another sign of the failing economy.
So the least I could do was resolve not to make such a mountain out of my blah-day molehill. I finished my dangled thought with an eye-squeezing hope for his luck to turn around. I finished my work. I collected my girls, went home and reunited us with their daddy, and hung my new print in its intended place on our kitchen wall. And that’s how I started our weekend: the four of us together, warm and dry in our comfy-if-crazed house.
And just what I need to see each morning to keep me bobbing above the less than euphoric zeitgeist.
Straight to the point has never been my strong suit but just as I was reminded in such a visible way last week to count my blessings, I’d like to wish all my Christmas-celebrating friends and readers (!) a wonderful day filled with blessings so numerous that they pile, as my elder daughter would say of the biggest infinities she can comprehend, all the way to the ceiling.