This morning, while I was reading the daily comics on line and savoring the miraculously chilly morning, a growing noise turned to a window rattling roar.
I've lived in this town for 8 years now, and I know that sound: the sound of crop dusters! I ran out of the house to the sidewalk just in time to see the plane make another pass right over the tree in our front yard, incredibly, deliciously, thrillingly close. Bolting back to the studio, I shouted for Alex and Lillian to come look, and grabbed my camera. Bernie joined us in time to see a pass of the plane, awakened from his sleep by Lillian's shouts of "Do it again! Do it again!"
It was like starting the day with a party. A beautiful day, laughter and wonder, a stunning air show. The time is evening now, and I'm still grinning and glowing from this morning's treat.
Sadly, we were the only family who came out of their suburban houses to see what the noise was about. A couple children walking to school early pointed at the plane in surprise, but other kids never even bothered to give the plane a second glance.
You know, I hear people crabbing and bitching about other people every day. I see folks take offense where none was intended; try to pick fights for the sake of excitement in their lives; sit and sulk in the flatulent miasma of their pointless grudges; get angrier still when others don't want to be dragged down by their hatred of their own lives. I truly wish everyone could feel the happiness I felt this morning, the awe, the presence of the moment.
There was nothing else in the world but the smiles, the fresh breeze, the yellow and red biplane against the blue sky. My heart felt opened to the Joy in Existence that is the Creator's grace.
There will most likely always be poverty, war, pestilence, greed, and all manner of cruddy habits and crimes people don't want to turn from. I can't change the way the traffic lights are set, or the shoddy customer service at the local grocery store, or the destruction of elephants' habitats. But I can accept that there are instances of sublime delight in life, and throw myself into the choice of happiness -- and be happy.
P.S. The photo was taken looking straight up from our driveway.