Aging

Rain on Route 66

Forty-six years ago I lived in Savannah, Georgia with husband number one.  I frustrated him because I loved walking in the rain, spontaneous day trips, and shared humor that buzzed annoyingly around his head like hornets looking for a place to land.  We were not well matched.

This morning, I remembered those walks in the rain when I left HEB (the local grocery store) in a downpour.  The rain showed no signs easing up; so, I took a deep breath and rushed outside.  I was surprised by a sudden dip in the parking lot pavement and my jeans were soaked to the knees.

I waded forward pushing my cart.  Shoppers joined me in the large puddle with surprise on their faces and utterances of exclamation: “My shoes!”  “Oh, no!”  “I’m soaked!”

I had to do it.  I kicked water.  I felt twenty again; so I splashed my way to the car—each step an exercise in freedom.  Pure joy.  I laughed at the absurdity of my appearance.

Once home, I placed wet boxes of crackers on the shelves, wiped pooled water out of the canvas totes, and lowered the car windows so no mildew would form on the seats.

When we recapture our youthful indulgences, we confirm our lasting connections to our inner being, our non-judgment of others living large, and our insistence on seeing with our hearts all the puddles, pets and petunias.  Even hard pavement can make room for soft, cool splashes of joy.

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