winning

I have had an exceptionally wonderful past two days (typing while sighing contentedly to myself). The sunny weather has entered into my blood; I’m hooked and I want more.

On Thursday, I took full advantage of the almost-spring weather and decided to do the opposite of typical St. Patty’s Day shenanigans: I went for a run in the woods. I was already super pumped that I was going to be trying out my new shoes on trails that I had only previously hiked at the Rocky River Reservation, but the day was to get even better. As I started to run, I crossed paths with a student of mine. He joined me and we had a fantastic, albeit challenging, run. I still don’t know how he was able to talk so much as well as set our pace, but I was certainly appreciative of the hard workout. I hadn’t intended to run that fast, that hard, and that long, so I’m chalking it up to divine intervention that he showed up to keep me on track and push me to my limits. Plus, it’s always nice to have a running buddy. The trails, while muddy, were a lot of fun to run. Two deer, countless robins and nuthatches, and a bluejay accompanied us on different portions of the run, and rather than feeling like an intruder, I felt welcome. A little Disneyesque, I know, but I found myself silently vowing to the flora and fauna of the RRNC that I would visit more frequently.

After my student departed, I returned to the Nature Center to snoop around a bit and indulge myself with a little bird watching at the feeders. Much to my delight, the seasoned volunteers were selling their famous maple-sugar candies, so I satisfied myself in purchasing four lumps, sat down in a rocking chair, and let the maple-sugary goodness melt in my mouth as I watched the perching birds flit from feeder to tree. Glorious.

“Could this day get any better?” was literally the thought swirling around my head when I reluctantly pried myself out of the slatted chair and made my way back to my car.  As I noshed on some Sweedish Fish and made my way home to the kittens, I thought at this point I was peaking in my joyousness. Alas, I was thankfully wrong.

Later I joined my sis up at the Y for a second workout: spinning and abs. I realize this makes me sound almost manic about working out, but mostly I was just going to socialize with Sara and to take Jackie’s class. Jackie is my favorite instructor, and despite being tired from my run, she really kept me motivated during the class.

By the end of the abs portion of the class, I was feeling pretty damn good about both my workout and my day. I arrived home just as Mark did from his run, and we both easily came to the consensus that it was a pizza night. We sat without the TV on and laughed at the kitten antics as we ate. My day had somehow, magically perhaps, actually gotten better.

I took all of that positive energy with me to bed and woke up today with a smile on my face. I love Fridays for the simple facts that I get to wear jeans and the kids are usually in a great mood. Both of these factors make for a fast, easy day.  When I left work, I walked out into sunny, warm weather once more. Additionally, I had just found out that I had the winningest bids for the two items I wanted at the Thoreau Society’s fundraiser auction: a Walden Pond Red Maple sapling, and an autographed copy of The Quotable Thoreau.

As I drove home to meet Mark so I could accompany him on my bike while he ran, I couldn’t help but feel unstoppable in a way. I was high on my accomplishments, my good fortune; I was high on life. I recounted to Mark all about my past 48 hours – how I felt both lucky and powerful – and while I’m pretty sure he thought I was just having one of my dramatic moments, I saw my cheerful energy wrap itself around him.

Looking back on today and yesterday, none of what happened was extremely out of the ordinary; however, the one common denominator and catalyst to it all was the fabulous, sunny weather. These past two days reminded me of how something so simple as being outside can be an intoxicatingly positive force in one’s life – at least in mine.

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