Archives for posts with tag: happiness

A few weeks back I went with only one bag, ready to fill it with orphan library books. It was that time of year again when the library takes stock, unloading its shelves of books that will find happy, new homes. I’ve perused Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project in the past, but didn’t immediately jump to action.

When I saw a beat up copy of the book staring out at me, I thought now seems the right time to dive in, figure out some more simple pleasure that I can add to my list and find new perspective in the familiar. There was a “Damage Noted” sticker on this one: “ragged, readable.” I taped up the front and back cover to reinforce it to get more use out of it before it starts to fall apart. I found some other books; I could’ve taken more bags, but I made a deal with myself that one bag was enough. I did also end up carrying a few books under my arms.

I’ve been dipping in and out of books. At one point I was going to pick up, in book form, where I left off in the audio version. I didn’t recognize anything, then I realized it was the wrong book and felt better. I sometimes worry that I’ll start losing track and cross plots and characters amongst the books I’m juggling. I’m usually pretty good about keeping it all separate. It’s challenging though, in the sense that I yearn to get back to one book, then another pulls me in, and that other one over there is saying, ‘read me, read me.’ All these books are vying for my attention.

Sometimes I know right away if a book and are will get a long really well; other times, I need to keep going a little longer to see if we’re a good fit. And still other times, I will feel satisfied right where I’ve stopped–forcing a new ending because another book is calling.

One book I almost gave up on is Antoine Laurain’s The Red Notebook. I’m so glad I didn’t. Month’s ago I started reading it, then put it aside. I had also downloaded the audio and started listening to it, then back to reading it–then perhaps it was being in one of the small bookstores looking through the tables of recommended books, and just maybe it was the woman nearby, also looking, searching, whom looked to me and said I loved this book, have you read it. I looked and because it was the hard cover, I didn’t immediately recognize it, then I said, “well, I started it, but haven’t finished it yet. I do believe it was her nudge that brought me back to the audio version. A sweet love story, that talking about, is making me want to go back for a visit.

One book that I recently downloaded is A Concise Chinese English Dictionary for Lovers. It’s different, in the way it’s organized through words–through the words the protagonist is learning, sprinkled with Chinese sayings. It has intrigued me and I think I’m in for the long haul. I want to see where this goes, how the language and thought process develops, how it ends.

Traveling through books is one of my favorite pastimes and also reading about peoples lives. I don’t always know whose lives will pull me in, wanting to read more, wanting to get to know the person more, read (hear about their experiences).

A couple of these that have recently come to my attention are Take Off Your Shoes: One Man’s Journey from the Boardroom to Bali and Back by Ben Fender. I am looking forward to traveling alongside Mr. Fender and his family. I’ve read up until the point where the transition begins and am happily awaiting getting back to the journey. The writing is clean and already I feel like I’m just beginning to know his family.

Driving Miss Norma: One Family’s Journey Saying Yes to Living by Tim Bauerschmidt and Ramie Liddle. How could I not be inspired by a 90 year old woman, who is diagnosed with uterine cancer, and decides to say yes to life , join her son and daughter-in-law on an adventure on wheels, living out the time she has left in what may possibly be her last hurrah.

I came across these books from the daily BookBub email that I signed up for. I have found out about many great deals from them. It’s great!

http://www.bookbub.com

I came across the book, The Novel Cure while I was looking for another book in the library shelves. I like the concept of being prescribed a book for what ails you. I also like the idea of being introduced to books that I may not come across or some that I’ve read to see what the ailment was. A fun one to flip through.

Here I sit, writing in my journal, one of my tippity-top forms of happiness and one of which I’ve been depriving myself from enjoying.

Here I sit feeling the cold on my arms,
feeling my muscles tense with the chill.
One last sip from my teacup,
minty freshness perks my senses.
I hear the television in the background,
the aroma of someone’s hearty dinner wafting in the air,
happiness found in the tap tap tap of fingers on the keyboard,
as thoughts connect with words connect with the page,
making the day feel alright.

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As I exit the library doors, outside
the majestic pines and quietness of the street wrap around me like a
warm embrace.

It was a late night. I walked to the parking garage in a bit of a fog. Parked on the rooftop, I opted for the elevators rather than the stairs. There were four people waiting together, talking and laughing. I took notice of the woman: petite, white wavy hair to her shoulders. I noticed her shoes first, then her outfit. She had to have been in her seventies, but she seemed like a young woman, in how she stood, in her stylish strapped sandals with a small heel, but everything about her was elegant in an understated way.

We all entered the elevator, two men, the woman and her husband. She had a smile on her face–it never left. She glowed with happiness. They were all laughing about whatever they had been talking about. In my fog, I didn’t hear anything but the happiness.

She turned to me as if to tell me a secret and motioned with her eyes, “They just got married.”

“Ah,” I said. I was lost for words, but I managed to smile and hold her gaze for a moment.

We reached their floor and said our goodnights. The doors were about to close, the woman ten to twelve feet away by now, turned to me, gave a big smile and the sweetest wave goodbye like a little girl waving to her school friend. I waved back, smiling to her as the doors closed.

Dec 2012

Never let go the reins of the wild colt of the heart
—Buddhist Saying

Bundled up on a winter’s night, off we went in search of a pair of winter boots to sustain the snow, for soon we will experience our first snow trip together.

We passed one of my favorite sculptures in the shopping plaza. I didn’t have my camera and asked my significant other if he could take a photo with his phone. After he took a few shots, I walked up to the dancer, offered my hand, looked into his deep eyes, and then turned to the camera.

I thanked my Love and planted a kiss on his lips.

As I—we—dance into 2013, and as God wills, into the years, I will hold onto those reins—I will feel the flutter of my heart for the experiences—great and small—of this magical adventure called life.

Sending many positive wishes and blessings many times over.

Rebb