“Its for us, Yegie!” I exclaimed, while looking at a beautiful sunset cradle the clouds of another beautiful Oakland sky. We had ventured through the streets of downtown Oakland, taking a walk between shopping at the neighborhood stores, on a day that seemed to pronounce its’ own beauty through the skies, sights, and flavors of the city I now call “home”.
My gratitude continues to grow for the natural beauty found in California. Living here often feels akin to a paradise. And I often pause to reflect on the abundance of beauty this land contains. While it may feel like “the belly of the beast” of man-made sins, this city provides a constant reminder that many of the beautiful things in life are free for us to enjoy and receive nourishment from.
This year, I’ve spent a lot of time sitting on the patio at Azar’s home. A lot of time. The joy of this patio (where I’m writing now) never gets tiresome. If anything, it only seems to improve as time goes by. Azar recently replaced the patio cushions and I can now perch comfortably for hours without worry of a sore derrière. It isn’t only the cushions, but the growing number of good memories that have been built on this patio with our SF family of friends.
Up here, I see things. A lot of things.
During the daytime, a steady stream of people circle around the lake; walking or jogging around beautiful Lake Merritt. Parents push strollers as they jog, while others yak on their phones during their morning run. Runners always seem to shout twice as loud as those who walk. Rude.
It feels a bit like clockwork to see the cycle of people; each new hour brings another regular shift of activity. During some evening hours, men walk around the water with saxophones or trumpets to serenade those passing by. It’s all done for the enjoyment and love of life each of us is free to enjoy.
When I stare at the television, all I see is a constant prod that who I am and what I have isn’t enough, and the next best car, razor, woman, or article of clothing will somehow help me become closer to being “complete” by the standards of television.
What a load of bullshit. I mean, really. I’ve met many people who feel somehow inadequate for who they are simply because they don’t feel as if they ‘stack up’ or have enough as those around them.
Today, I am thankful for the imperishable gift of love, friendship, and the beauty of nature that continues to silence me with its’ majesty.
The best things in life don’t have a price tag. Being outside is a reminder of this truth, that life is sweet and supposed to be enjoyed by us with gratitude to the Creator.