Today I went for a walk through my hometown. The sun was shining, the air was cool and there was a beautiful, heavy breeze blowing. I have spent the past 31 years of my life in this town and yet I think I really saw it for the first time today. Absolutely beautiful. Breathtaking. Stunning. These are the same streets I stumbled through as a giggling teenager. I went for grade school walks with my classmates down these cobblestone streets. I drove these historical streets as a newly minted driver, sixteen and tightly clutching the steering wheel. But today, it was the first time I really saw and appreciated the beauty right outside my back door. I believe that experiences enrich our souls and enliven our spirits. They inspire and teach. They allow us to appreciate the beauty in the every day and help us not take things for granted.
I could have spent the day hunched over a keyboard, staring blankly into a computer screen. I could have numbed my senses with a television show of the reality variety (a personal favorite of mine). But instead I chose to explore, to listen, to talk and to appreciate. Last year at this time I lost someone very special to me. I’m glad that this year was spent enjoying the beauty that is all around us. I sometimes think the secret to happiness is the ability to pay attention to and appreciate the little joys in life. They really are all around us, we just have to look for them.