I’m back from a marvellous visit to Galway to take part in a fantastic project called Read My World, celebrating diversity and difference through books, and I’m on a high. However, I’m always ranting about balance and so to make sure I haven’t been enjoying myself too much in the presence of lots of eager readers/ writers/ librarians/ teachers, all full of ideas and empathy and fun, I’ve returned home sick for the first time in years.
There, I’ve said it – even admitting it makes me flinch. I don’t do sick and I’m not a good patient. Also, my boss is not a good boss in this situation either. (The boss is me). And so, I’m ignoring my defunct lungs and hacking cough and temperature and instead, I’m going to celebrate.
We rarely give shout outs to the small things, the special things, the stuff that’s making us tick on a day to day basis, instead reaching for the grand or unusual or extraordinary. (Well, that’s me, anyway). And so, here are some things I’m feeling inspired by (I’m hoping you’ll share some of your own after reading – let’s celebrate the unsung heroes/small marvels of our own little worlds)…
Birdsong. I’m hearing the birds singing a little earlier and a little later each day, it’s a melody I never tire of and it brightens any day.
Books. It seems no matter how much I age, no matter what’s going on, books will always be my saving grace. And after being in front of hundreds of avid young readers, I always feel my appreciation of this fact rekindled and extra fired up. My current reads are Tara Westover’s Educated – an incredible, incredible book that I can’t put down – and Muhammad Khan’s kick the Moon, which is some perfect YA that nails London teen life.
Daffodils. They’re sprouting everywhere in West Cork right now, making outside so cheery.
Friends. This week, friends have sent me the perfect podcast (thanks Jackie!), the perfect poems (thanks Clare! thanks Nicola!), surprise cards (thanks Darragh!), wise words and warm virtual hugs. So precious, each and every one.
Frogspawn. I love seeing this stuff appear – it signifies life and vitality and positive expectations, the coming of even more light. (Though it does also mean I’ll soon be on the lookout to rescue young froglings from my super-hunter cats.)
Librarians. These people create spaces where worlds can open up to anyone – for free. They have such passion and energy for books and people, they create community hubs where people can learn and make friends and they make the world magic.
Post. For every packet, postcard, letter, certificate, and cheque ever sent/delivered, thank you. It shines a light on the day, always.
Seaweed. I love eating it, foraging for it, preparing it, bathing in it – everything about this wonderful sea veg makes me happy. I can’t get enough.
Steroids. I can breathe again – I’m really rather grateful.
Trains. I love you for your trolley service, your nice ticket collectors, your toilets, your wifi and plug sockets that enable me to complete work on the go so I can take time off when I finally reach home.
VeryFit watch. Anything that allows me to leave my phone at home so I can zone out wins my vote. (Nope, no messages, no notifications, nothing. Just me and the countryside.)
And so – what’s keeping you buoyant right now? What small joys would you like to celebrate?