Monday, February 8, 2010
Applaud Life by Bob Perks
I stood on a large rock at the back of the hotel, high atop a hill overlooking a golf course. From my vantage point I could see for miles. From off to my right, I heard the faint sounds of an approaching train. To my left was the greatest show on earth. No, not the circus. The sunset.
I had been in a hurry to get settled into my room for the evening. Having just traveled about five hours, I was tired and hungry. I rushed out the back door and planned on heading to the mall across the street. During my previous visit here, I remembered that they had not one, but two, Chinese restaurants. I love chicken fried rice and wonton soup.
But it all had to wait. It was calling me again.
Just as I reached for my keys, I looked up and saw the great possibilities in the patterns that were forming off in the distance. I argued with my growling stomach and my Mickey Mouse watch that this wouldn't take very long. But a good sunset from beginning to end often does.
I discovered a huge boulder that was perfectly placed at the corner of the property, right on the edge of the hill. Some landscape designer had most likely charged the hotel owners a bundle to place the boulder there - for it served as a focal point for people to gather as they toured the property and the sales manager pointed out the nearby golf course and tennis club.
Yes, others had been there before me, perhaps breathing in the fresh air and soaking up the last rays of sunshine.
But today I was happy to have this front-row seat all to myself.
About a half mile away, the approaching train passed by the remnants of a previously occupied factory and then jauled its dozen or more flat cars through the wooded backdrop of the ninth hole. While seated in my hot tub at home, I often wave at planes flying overhead as I wonder where the passengers are headed. It seemed appropriate to do the same for the trainmen. I knew they couldn't see me, but it still mattered to me.
As I watched, the sun began its final descent, painting the clouds and sending golden beams of light high into the sky, the brightness of the sunset created a silhouette of the trees and buildings before me. I turned away fro a moment, so that even I cast a long shadow across the parking lot, making me feel bigger than I am.
Then the finale.
I heard a voice inside me. It was that childish prankster from my past that taunts me with "Dare ya!" and "Bet you won't do it!"
So I did. I didn't care who might be looking. I applauded as if I had just seen the final performance of Cats on Broadway. I even yelled "All right!" and "That's a keeper!"
It was over. I slowly turned wondering if anyone saw me. But no one was there. Someone should have noticed. How sad it was. They were probably having pizza somewhere. But they lost and I gained.
They would have at least had a good laugh at the man who applauded life. Or perhaps they would have joined me. Maybe next time.
When was the last time life was so exciting that joy and happiness burst out and you just had to stand up and applaud?
Here is my challenge to you. Tomorrow when you wake up, jump out of bed and applaud. Whistle and yell, "All right!" and "This is a keeper!" And then just wait until you see how your day turns out.
I dare ya! I double dare ya!
"Be still and know that I am God." ~ Psalm 46:10
Today's Tip: Offer to carry someone's groceries to their car, pay the toll for someone behind you or give some flowers to the toll workers! Just think of the lasting smiles those little things will create!