This week I attended a terrific business conference in Florida, where a cool sun was shining. Of course in the last hour I realized all my time had all been spent in conference rooms, so I went for a quick jog before heading to the airport.
I was stopped in my tracks by the beautiful sound of birdsong, and very close by! Sure enough, right at eye level, she was singing away and completely undisturbed by my presence. After a moment of taking it in, I even took a little video, so that I could carry this moment of spring back to the north with me.
There I was, communing with nature, sun on my face, feeling all blissed-out, when suddenly the bird coughed up a big orange berry, and spat it right at my face. At first I felt a tiny twinge of “Hey, birdie, you’re wrecking my bliss. Plus, that’s gross.” And then I could not stop laughing. Within 30 seconds I’d gone from mildly content to thoroughly delighted.
This kind of thing happens all the time – the beautiful outfit that’s splashed by a slush-puddle, the terrific picnic beset by a sudden thunderstorm, the innocuous question that elicits a zany reply, the adorable kid who has drawn a masterpiece on the wall…. surprises of all sorts carry the potential for irritation, and for laughter.
Dear friends, if our perfect picture has a ragged edge today, let’s take the opportunity to celebrate its surprising imperfection. Let’s opt for joy.