Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Perfect Day

The other day as Woki and I took our six a.m. walk, the new day's sunlight had that special coruscating quality of an early summer morning, and the warm air held the delicate scent of peonies and honeysuckle. We headed toward the Lake, both of us savoring the peace and quiet. It was still early enough that we encountered few people and even fewer vehicles, though we were privileged to see a fox emerge from the shrubbery some ten yards ahead of us. Assuming correctly that we posed no threat, the fox proceded to trot nonchalantly down the sidewalk, then disappear onto the grounds of one of L. F.'s grand mansions. I wondered, as I often do, what it must be like to live in such a place--but that's a subject for some other post.

As we continued our stroll eastward to the park and the magnificent views of Lake Michigan, I pondered what makes a perfect day. Regardless of the size of our homes, most of us have been fortunate enough to experience a day we could rate pretty close to perfect: special events with family and friends, a best-day-of-the-vacation, or perhaps just a day of freedom from the stress of work.

For me, there are a few basic criteria for a perfect day: time spent outdoors (this can be tricky in Chicago), some sort of exercise (this can be tricky anywhere), accomplishing something (perferably from my ridiculously long "to-do" list), and sharing a nice meal with family and/or friends. There are, of course, innumerable additional pleasures (chocolate, afternoon naps, good music, windfalls of any sort, etc.). But if I really distill my most cherished things, I come up with an alliterative list: family, friends, freedom, and, oh, yeah, food. Sounds like the 4th of July.

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