I walked to get my hair cut in the sleet today. About a mile and a half. Wind in my face. On the way there, I was in a grumbly mood. I was thinking, "Why am I working so hard to save the environment for other people's children?" (I was having these thoughts in response to the number of SUVs I saw pumping out noxious black fumes and driving way too fast in the sleet.) Something must have happened during the hair cut, because on my way home, walking in even heavier sleet, I had one of those precious experiences in which I knew the moment was perfect. I needed nothing more in life than to be walking in the sleet. In all seriousness, I could have died at that moment and felt utter contentment. The moment passed, as these moments do for me. (Maybe someday I'll figure out how to have them stick around!) But the story wasn't over for me. When I returned home, an e-mail from a friend was waiting for me with this quote (from a Howard Zinn documentary).
"To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness... And if we do act, in however small a way, we don't have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory."
Quite serendipitous, I think. Ponder that with a cup of tea.