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December 8th, 2008 - frazzled and bedazzled — LiveJournal
The other morning I was standing around, waiting for my bus. It was cold. At least, it was cold to me. Since I apparently break out in allergic hives once we're in the 50s, it's hard for me to really judge. No, actually, I'm just going to stick with: it was cold. We've had a lot of cold, still mornings this fall where a thick fog hangs there just above the ground and seems to go on all the way up to the sky. That combination of cold and damp air, while still, has a way of creeping under the clothes and making you notice every little bit of it.

I found my mind wandering.

Not surprisingly, I started thinking of one of my favorite moments from my recent trip to Hawaii. One day I rented a car and drove to Oahu's famous north shore. I had just passed the Dole Plantation and was debating with myself on whether I should go back and do the tour. I had a whole day stretching ahead of me and so many ways to spend it. But alas, there was no way to do it all. It was hard deciding what to do and what not to do.

The road was sort of close in with fields on either side, so my view was limited to the road, the cars around me, and the fields. Suddenly, I crested a hill and the view opened up. It was breathtaking. Near me were the verdant fields covering a rich, red earth. Ahead of me was an endless expanse of ocean with white waves close to shore, turquoise-blue water a little farther out, and a deep, deep blue beyond, sparkling in the sun. The deep, bright blue of the sky blended with the deep, dark blue of the ocean off in the distance.

If I could have, I would have stopped the car right there in the middle of the road. I would have soaked it all in and built my anticipation, then took off down the hill like a kid screeching along the sand before jumping headlong into the ocean.

It's such a lovely feeling, seeing a sight like that and knowing you've got a free day to be a part of it. At that moment, you don't feel any particle of sadness that you've got just the one day; all you feel is a delicious amazement and awe, and that you must be one of the luckiest people in the world to be where you are at that moment.

My few moments of that memory and its echo of delight were the perfect thing to get me through that wait for the bus. It almost - almost - makes me feel good about the waits in the cold I'll be going through until next spring, knowing I can pull that memory out at any time and drift away with it.

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