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Don’t Forget the Ice Cream

Did you see it? The other night at dusk, did you stop and take a few minutes to look at it? Wednesday night took its good old time to fall into darkness, and the show provided to us across the horizon was nothing short of glorious.

I was driving across the hilltop near Wheeling Park High School when I was awestruck by not only the red, orange and blue-gray colors presenting themselves on heaven’s perfect skyline, but because others had pulled their vehicles over and got out to watch the sun kiss the day goodbye.

At a nearby home, the residents were seated in their yard, observing this free spectacle that only a Master artist could create. I’m sure there are scientific and meteorological explanations for what we were witnessing yet that didn’t matter at the moment. The sky was a reminder that there is still beauty in an otherwise chaotic world today.

We may not be able to change much about the state of things but we can enjoy the simplest of pleasures that cost nothing other than our time and a little energy.

The coronavirus pandemic turned us all upside down in ways we would not have fathomed five months ago. There is not much normal about our daily lives outside of the fact that the sun rises and sets as predicted each day.

If there is one thing that many of us have realized throughout these months it is not what we need so much but what we don’t need. I have found that many of the material trappings we took for granted would always be there aren’t so high on our priority lists today. And supplies of certain things we desire are not so easy to find.

Personally I have found delight in simpler “things” including a cold glass of milk and graham crackers. Sure I could take those graham crackers and make s’mores over the gas grill but it wouldn’t be the same as cooking them over a campfire with the grandkids.

Social distancing and fear of spreading the virus don’t make that possible as much as we would like.

For all the parents whose kids are driving them nuts being at home so much, there are an equal number of grandparents wishing with all their hearts they could be there, too.

In place of social outings, there has been a resurgence of the Sunday drive, something many of us remember from our own childhood. Gas is relatively cheap so a leisurely drive is a good way to feel part of a community from a distance. Many of us are rediscovering the back roads of our grand valley, from “out-the-crick” to the hilltops and ridges that take us through areas untouched by the modern world.

Find what simple things make you happy. Whether it’s reading the newspaper over a good cup of coffee or a stop at the Dairy Queen on one of those Sunday drives, enjoy. And don’t forget to stop and look westward.

The sunset is waiting for you.

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