Parenthetically Speaking

I love Saturdays…

August 27, 2014


Saturday, a day filled with promise and no demands.  My Saturdays nearly all begin the same way-a nice long walk or hike.  Usually, preferably with my dog, my daughter and her dog on the hiking trail at Lake Fayetteville.  Sometimes on the best Saturdays my Little Rock daughter and her dog will join us.

But occasionally I find myself waking up on a Saturday morning in a city, with no dog or daughters.  Those walks are harder to start but can be magnificent just the same.

I love to head out around 9:30 when the city is waking up to receive the day and her patrons.  (Also I start at 9:30 because I can’t bring myself to get off the couch before that).

As I walk the blocks back and forth up and down, I like to pretend

the streets are stretching and yawning themselves awake to prepare for all the cars and pedestrians that will soon descend.

the perfectly landscaped plants and flowers are righting themselves to catch the eyes of passerby’s.

the beautifully dressed windows are proud to be free of smudges, glistening in the sunlight.

the sidewalks laced with shade and sunshine preparing for the barrage of feet in all shapes and sizes.

And the people, oh the people.

People filing out of breakfast shops, still in mid conversation, bellies full and ready to start the day.

Shop keeps scurrying to work with takeout coffees in hand.

Shop girls tying on aprons and setting out dog dishes of fresh water.

Fellow walkers/runners getting in a morning workout before the heat becomes oppressive and the morning slips to afternoon.

And I am struck by one thing and one thing only…

beholding beauty is a choice. My choice.

I can discipline myself to look for the beauty in moments, locations, situations or not.

It’s a city so there are the not so beautiful scenes as well.  But a few thorns will never keep this girl from smelling the roses!

There are moments, places, and situations in our lives that require us to choose.

Will we focus on the ugliness or the beauty?

Will we focus on the loss or the gain?

Will we focus on the sacrifice or the fruit?


When you walk in the city, what do you see?