Have I mentioned how happy I am to be back here?
Little things tickle me. It doesn’t take much to get me so impressed that I giggle. And life is always better suited up with a smile. It truly is. Try it sometime. Try smiling at the simple and you’ll find rewards that overshadow anything material or ambitiously acquired.
I’ve been stepping about my old corner of Orlando, forgetting little things I had forgotten, or possibly taken advantage of, or even overlooked when I had lived here before. I went to George’s to do laundry the other day (if you read “Mad Man Knitting or The Waiter and The Fly” then you remember George). George only lives 3 blocks from here, and the walk to his house (my former home, as well) was filled with those reminiscent images that you forget, familiarities that remind you of safety. There is a little park that is adjacent to his house, a wetland smack downtown, swarming with birds and wildflowers. The little bridge you have to cross to get through the park to get to George’s house is rickety and beat up, imperfectly made, but does the job….and stepping across the planks I smiled, remembering how I used to get pissy at the rot and musky smell of the wet wood. I didn’t this time. I smiled because if the bridge had been fixed to be a beautiful perfect step through the park, it wouldn’t have been the same. If it had been updated and modernized…. I would have been robbed of a valuable lesson.
Then Kara and I went to Medina’s Market the other day. I had passed this little place for a decade and never felt the desire, nor want to step inside. Why? It was kinda shabby from the outside, kinda limp, and didn’t have the extreme beauty of a modern supermarket. Devoid of bright lights and painted a dull brown, it didn’t please a younger me that needed it to be crisp and clean.
With it being but a block away, Kara and I decided (she also confessing she had never been) to walk up and check it out. And I’m so terribly glad we did. Yes, it looks the same as it always did, imperfect and dated…..but so wonderfully simple. It’s a little Cuban grocery store, filled with anything you could desire to make a great GREAT Cuban meal. Fresh produce that was slightly bruised, but grown in a garden from someone’s yard (now THAT is organic). Banana leaves for making Tamales. Bags of beans galore, a room filled with no decor, but old metal shelves proudly announcing their wares. I fell in love. I truly did. Kara grabbed the ingredients to make a Plantain soup. WOW! And then we stepped over to a little counter in this tiny market to fetch a Cuban sandwich. $4.50, split in half for the two of us to share, and we could barely finish it. We were full. That’s how lush, wonderful, and AMAZING that sandwich was. $4.50!
Then I came across this skein of Fisherman’s wool from Lionbrand called Birchwood. It’s slightly strange in the way its randomly designed with a creme base, speckled with hints of brown and blossoming spots of black. And the more I looked at, the more I thought about growing up a gangly, pale, freckled red head and being reminded how imperfect I was. (ok, I believed them at the time, but I do have to say, I think I’m a cutie now 🙂 ) So, I snagged the skein and got to work on a bear that reminded me how perfect imperfection is. The idea of perfection is truly only about hope and ideals, some that are diluted with self doubt, and some that are buried in truth. Perfection is based on how you often wish things were, rather than how they really are. And when you get to the point of acceptance for how things are, rather than how you WISH they were, or WANT them to be, you crest into the truth of perfection. All was made as it should be, not as you want them. All happens in life as it should, not as you want them. And when you remember that there is a greater purpose perfectly placing imperfections in front of you, you get it. Perfection is about acceptance. Not of the object or moment in question, but of your own judgements.
So, I introduce to you, my new bear. “Not Every Bear is Perfect.” Beautiful moments are born from the acceptance of the imperfect.
And that should be a lesson for all of us. 🙂