But as a somewhat beleaguered possessor of an always-churning, usually-racing, problem-solving, conundrum-facing, event-replaying, needless-worrying, very busy mind, I thought I would use Thanksgiving as an opportunity to shut the ol’ blabbermouth of a noggin up and just plain notice stuff. Little stuff. So I took my dog for a walk through the urban residential area where we live and I opened my eyes.
I noticed that on a beautiful warm autumn day a lot of men like to wash their cars. But not one woman seems to.
I noticed that swarms of gnats can suddenly appear out of nowhere and enshroud your head, getting stuck in your eyelashes and down your mouth. I noticed how really gross that is.
I noticed that if several bright red splotches on the ground appear in my peripheral vision, I will immediately and without doubt assume there was some horrible crime for which these splotches of fresh blood are the only remaining evidence. But then on closer look, I noticed that sometimes fallen maple leaves can turn so vividly red, they look exactly like splotches of fresh blood. I also noticed that I can feel quite embarrassed at my ridiculous assumptions even if no one else is privy.
I noticed that a lot of cyclists like to wear the Lycra outfits favoured by Tour de France athletes. I wonder why. I noticed not everyone looks very good in skin-tight Lycra. But then they’re exercising, so good for them.
Down by the lake, I noticed that when swans tip their heads and upper bodies over to troll for food, their white elliptical butts look exactly like elegant vases bobbing on the water.
I noticed that a woman’s perfume can waft across the air from quite a distance, even if it is very delicate. I noticed how much I like the scent of delicate perfume.
I noticed that most people when they pass you will not look at you, but if they do and you smile at them, they will usually (but not always) smile back. One older woman’s face went from dour and angry to the most angelically beautiful smile I’d ever seen. I don’t think I’ll ever forget that. I noticed how I didn’t like the people who didn’t smile back.
I noticed the house by the lake that’s been abandoned for the thirteen years we’ve lived here has its garage door open and its years of ruined contents spilling out. Maybe someone will finally fix the place up. I noticed an old pillow by the gate on the grass; it still had its pillowcase on and was spattered with grime and dust. It looked like a nap by the gate had been intended then abandoned many years ago. I noticed that the house still looks like it’s haunted. And maybe the house is haunted because nothing except the pillow and garage have changed in all these years, even though the house is on a beautiful property with a primo spot by the lake.
I noticed that when two young brothers play in the leaves together, even if they are talking about monkeys flying in the sky, they can still have unabashed, unconditional love pouring from their eyes. The kind of unrestrained expression you almost never see pouring from grown-up people’s eyes.
I noticed how good it feels to shut my brain up for a few glorious minutes to notice things. Especially after turkey and mashed potatoes and a serious helping of gratitude.
Have you noticed something interesting today?
Deb: I noticed when I was reading this that my puppy was whining. I noticed my husband’s top lip pushes out when he dresses a turkey and in that moment I took time to notice how much I love him. And not just because he is doing the turkey. I noticed that the pilot light on the fireplace behind my head makes the sound of a tiny roaring fire when not on. Kinda like a fireplace in a mouse’s hole. I noticed that the birds outside who are scavenging the last of the apple berries on our tree all have different personalities, except for the ones that don’t. I noticed that when I hold in my pee while I am completing a task I am really proud of myself, even though someone said it isn’t good to do that. I noticed that when the sun hits our green and white variegated leafed bush just right, it looks like snow. I noticed that my camera charge light is on, which means I can take some pictures at our goddaughter’s birthday today. I noticed that her gift is wrapped but I haven’t yet signed the card. I noticed in the sunlight that the grey jacket I wore today does not match the plaid colours in my new pants. What I thought was a grey stripe, is pale yellow. I further noticed that I don’t care. And I certainly noticed that Thanksgiving ROCKS. Gorgeous warm weather, sunlight, and a smattering of cloud, the leaves giving off glorious colours, the smell of turkey and a beautiful table. And plenty to be thankful for. And thanks to Barb for inspiring me to notice too. I watched the wee Bairn chase a red leaf today on our walk and noticed that I was laughing out loud.
Happy Thanksgiving to all our Canadian and British friends! Gobble Gobble. Or Tofu Tofu!!!
And in a Thanksgiving-inspired homage to “the bird”, here’s a truly amazing bird for us all to admire (you have to watch to the end––it's astounding) (PS thanks, Cheryl, for sharing it with us!)