Aggravations swarm around us like summer’s pesky grasshopper flurries against the windshield.
Therefore, it is nice to be startled into appreciating things, great and small. Such surprising moments will crinkle the corners of your eyes and tilt your lips into a smile, or simply gladden your heart.
People acquainted with this writer know this woman prefers cleanliness to dirt and germs. And yet, she negates her avowed aversion to dirt by digging around in the flower beds — a relaxing yet grubby activity.
An integral component of flower beds is dirt. However, the maintenance process of planting and weeding are not conducive to keeping one’s body and clothing in pristine condition. But wait, although the activity may result in the condition technically defined as dirty, the moment of delight approaches.
The work is complete. Your garden looks perfect, but you do not. It is time to toss those grubby clothes into the washer, but do not forget to undress before doing so. Then the grubby body takes a shower. For at least a moment, all is right with your world because you are in the preferred state of cleanliness.
To be clear, we must distinguish between dirt and nasty dirt. For example, smeared, dead anything, areas frequented by the public or things that make you barf or scream “Ew” loud enough to set off the earthquake detectors, are considered nasty dirt.
Please note, those brief flutters of delight may come from any and all sources. Some of the happiness-inducing experiences may seem questionable. But if you consider the source (as in who is relating the delightful experience), then all will be clear.
When you embark on your daily gauntlet of torture known as the work commute, you expect to encounter the extended sitting-in-the-same-spot moments, known as idling. That does not mean you enjoy such moments, but rather, you have learned to deal with them in a vocal, less than refined, and frowned upon by holier than thou folks, manner.
What if the traffic gods offer you a rare but slightly munched on crumb? What if the flow of traffic is smooth, unimpeded by inexplicable traffic backups or careless accidents? And…you arrive at work not only on time but early. That is one of those smile-inducing moments of delight.
If you travel extensively by car, airplane or train, then you are aware that the condition of public restrooms often produces a loud “Ew or OMG!” How else can you explain the rise and popularity of Buc-ees? Their billboards litter the land with the siren’s promise of clean restrooms. As you would expect, there is a downside to the much touted multi-throne rooms. The restrooms may be clean, but to reach them, you will have to bulldoze your way through a mass of humanity, also known as the great unwashed, stuffing their faces at the fudge or ice cream bar counter.
Given what experience has taught you, it stands to reason that a spotless restroom can and does gladden the heart and other parts of a traveler, including folks working for a large corporation.
For example, as is quite common with this and other companies, there are restrooms on every floor. The ladies’ room contains six stalls. (Please note, not even for the sake of authenticating the information will this woman venture into the men’s room to verify the number of stalls awaiting male posteriors within its walls.) One can assume that every stall will entertain multiple visitors during any given day.
Is it any wonder that she who discovers a virgin toilet at the end of a workday (with the seat up), experiences a brief flutter of incredulous delight? After all, she is about to sit on a throne on which no other, but she, has reigned.
Even the simplest and somewhat unusual moments can gladden the heart.