A Perfect Day

Friends, I hope this post finds you happy and refreshed as we start this week.

Normally my Sundays are spent resting and in the comfort of my home. My health prevents me from venturing out the way I used to.  A thirty minute trip to the grocery store can feel monumental. Some days I’m alright, but on most days I’m not. And most days lately have been bad days.

So on Saturday evening, I was a bit surprised, pleasantly surprised, when my husband asked if I would like to go to the zoo the following morning.

It may sound silly and a little pathetic, but when I’m out with my husband he has a way of making me feel secure. If I get sick or tired wherever we are, I know he will handle the situation beautifully, and get me home quickly if need be. But being sensitive to how I feel, he is often reluctant to suggest we go out and have fun. I in turn am reluctant to make the same suggestions, because I never want to be a burden on him.

The thought of going to the zoo had me smiling. We love animals. And it had been a while since quality time together involved more than being stuck at home, holding hands on the couch and finding something mutually appealing to watch on TV. So I answered his question with a happily enthusiastic “yes.”

We arrived before noon. The zoo’s residents seemed to prefer late morning naps to playing and being busy. We are experiencing our first real heat of spring here in Northern California, and we guessed that the unseasonable warmth had something to do with their behavior. It made it impossible for me to get any good photos, with everyone sleeping under trees or shelters, hiding from view. My husband sensed my disappointment.

“Let’s see what the giraffes are doing. Maybe they are out and about,” he said as he grasped my hand and led me in that direction.

It is always interesting with our giraffe friends. They were standing outside, looking curiously as everyone passed or looked back at them with equal curiosity. But it was some of the same. As a burgeoning photographer, I felt disappointed when my super tall friends preferred the shade to the sunshine. I took my camera out and tried anyway, hoping for something special to come out of it.

And then I got this one.

I think it captures the mysterious and peaceful beauty they possess.

Sacramento Zoo giraffe

Sometimes I find myself in moments like this, looking at this majesty, this miracle of life, and I am literally moved to tears. I deliberately contemplate my place in this world, and the most incredible thoughts flood my mind and the most amazing emotions fill my heart. I walk and share this earth with animals who are six feet tall when they are born. Creatures with hearts that weigh 25 pounds. Beings that have necks over two meters long, yet they have the exact same number of cervical vertebrae as me.

Little human me.

We continued to watch them.  Our smiles grew as we stood there, still holding hands, watching a parent and small child approach our tall friends with a young blonde woman, her black polo shirt identifying her as zoo personnel. It was feeding time.  My thoughts returned to the magic of it.  An animal eighteen feet tall, yet so gentle that it can lovingly take food from a three-year-old’s chubby hand, make her smile and laugh, and give her the experience of a lifetime.

It was a perfect moment. A perfect day. And it reminded me how I never want to lose my love for life and knowledge, and everything that is good. That despite how hard things feel, some things in this world are just amazing, and I always want to know that sense of wonder.

May you always know it, too.

Have a gorgeous week, everyone.

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