Today was a little bit hard. I had to make the Erie-to-Pittsburgh drive, which is usually not that bad and sometimes kind of fun, but today I had to do it at 8:30am and I was sleepy and there was road work traffic and it took almost an hour longer than it should have, and once I got off the interstate and headed towards the rental apartment that I am trying to call home for a few months I incited some random man’s road rage for daring to take a second too long in a turning lane, and internalized that the whole way home. And then I spent the whole day at my internship on the phone with rude librarians and confused pre-school secretaries, which I also internalized way too much, and by the time I was driving down the seven floors of the far-too-expensive parking garage I kind of just wanted to go home and nap. Or cry.
But instead of napping (or crying) I drove myself to the grocery store and then trie to think of little things that made today not so bad, and so I am going to share those with you. It was hard to think of ten. But it was good, too.
- My friend and apartment-mate Anastasia, texting me to check in on how I was doing and ask about my weekend in Chicago.
- The answering machine of a Catholic pre-school that ended the message with a cheery “God bless you and your day!”
- This very special song coming up on Spotify on the drive home.
- “For A Long Time This Was Griselda’s Story,” by Anthony Doerr, from The Shell Collector, a little book of short stories that is completely changing my irrational aversion to the genre. A good lunch break read. Or anytime read. I just happened to read it during my lunch break.
- Buying avocados at the grocery store. (I am eating one of those avocados right now.)
- The view of the Pittsburgh skyline as I cross Veteran’s Bridge into downtown, and the view from the elevator window riding down from the 7th floor of the garage where I usually end up parking.
- The very good striped skirt that I wore to work today.
- Texting Aaron from the grocery store and telling him I was aiming for a good balance of responsible grocery shopping and “I had a bad day” grocery shopping, and him replying, “Get ice cream.” (I already had ice cream at home, but it’s the thought that counts.)
- Making plans to hang out with my pgh pal Jill sometime this week.
- Knowing that even though calling long lists of strangers at work is really just not fun, I am at least becoming much better at leaving voicemails without saying “um” every three seconds.
Thanks for checking in, friends. Keep following the small things. Go home and eat avocados (or ice cream), and listen to a happy special song on your way there. That can be enough sometimes.