I am driving in my car, with the windows down because it is a beautiful day and I don't care if the wind messes my hair. It is sunny and 60, my favorite. The sky is an even blue sheet above me, and the road is a blur below me. Lily Allen is singing "Smile" on my iPod and I do, because I am old enough to know it is complicated, how she means it, not ironic. That's what we do: we just smile. Plus it's a pleasant and light tune.
I'm still in my workout clothes, fresh from the track and my laps. I sped along that track, relishing the fresh laid gravel, still damp from yesterday's rain, so the dust and pebbles didn't kick up so much. I circled past the sea twinkling back at the sun, over and over. I watched seagulls and pelicans fish the schools who risked the surface to catch some of that warm shine for themselves. The huge birds dove, scooped, then rose---the only white specks in the otherwise spotless sky. Triumphant, they tickled their full bellies along the tops of the tall wetlands grasses that grow out from the coastline. After my laps, I did a cool down walk, circling the trees and hibiscus bushes, and I wondered if I looked to some creature the way the birds looked to me.
In my car, I am less a part of the ground and more a part of the air. I am dog happy with the breeze in my face. Now Lynard Skynard is singing about Alabama, and I think about the South in the Spring and feel a little sorry for my Northern friends. Spring comes early and stays a while, late even this year. It smells different, damply verdant today thanks to the welcome rain yesterday. A front from the west temporarily pushed the humidity out to sea, so it is perfect, perfect today. And that makes me smile. Although sometimes it is hard to come by, it doesn't take much to make me happy.
Just watch this joy: