How often do we realize that in a given moment we may be in the eye of a blessing? That blessing may come in situations, forms we may not recognize at first glance. That’s what I experienced on my first extended outing after weeks of being cloistered. I had been going out for 5 minute walks near my home. They are so short due to the street situation around where I live. Still I figure it’s fresh air and some physical movement. It’s all good. I also ventured out a couple of times to the nearby health food store. Otherwise it had been about 12 weeks at home.
A need to actually go to a brick and mortar bank was the reason for an extended trip out into the wide, wide world.
The bank is about a 10 minute drive to my favorite neighborhood, commonly referred to as the Village. Besides the bank, there are some of my favorite shops and markets. Over the years I’ve also developed relationships with a number of the store owners .
A friend who has been helping me throughout the pandemic drove us to the Village. I was apprehensive about going into the bank. Would there be lineups? A long wait amongst lots of people? Would they be wearing masks and physical distancing? As we approached the bank none of the above was true. We were the only two in the bank other than the tellers. Everything went pleasantly easy peasy. This experience at the bank was the harbinger of how the rest of the day would unfold.
I visited a number of shops and markets that I had frequented pre-pandemic. As it was with the bank, my friend and I were the only customers in each store. What made it doubly great was being able to reconnect with the shop owners that I knew. Despite the masks and Plexiglas protectors at all check outs, it felt like old times.
At the end of the outing, I realized what a gift the excursion was. The universe had no doubt looked after and protected us. It was a gift for which I had much gratitude. I truly savor that experience every time I think about it. In addition to recreating feelings of positivity and well being, savoring has been proven to be a technique for hard-wiring happiness into the brain. (Who wouldn’t want that?)
You got it right, Mr. Rogers, “it was a beautiful day in the neighborhood. A beautiful day for a neighbor.”
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