endless hope

My favorite time of day is the first couple of hours before the sun comes up.  The quiet of morning makes me feel quite alone in the world, and I enjoy strolling the vacant streets with a cup of coffee.  The walk wakes my body, the coffee jolts my mind, and, ever so slowly, people begin to trickle out of their homes and into the streets.

If you look closely, everyone seems to understand their place in the world around 8am – business associates hop determinedly onto buses, students crack open their books, and shopkeepers swiftly sweep the floors.  As the day progresses, people inevitably feel tired or angry or sad, but in the morning, it just seems like endless hope.

That’s all for now, but tell me – what’s your favorite time of day?

the smallest detail

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My favorite time of day is the first couple of hours before the sun comes up.  The quiet of morning makes me feel quite alone in the world, and I enjoy strolling the vacant streets with a cup of coffee.  The walk wakes up my legs and the coffee jolts my mind, and, ever so slowly, people trickle out of their homes and into the streets.  The poetic and incredibly beautiful thing about people in the morning is how determined they seem to begin the day just right.   

If you watch closely, everyone seems to understand their place in the world around 8am – business associates hop determinedly onto bosses, students crack open their books, and shopkeepers swiftly sweep the floors.  As the day progresses, people inevitably feel tired or angry or sad, but in the morning, it just seems like endless hope.

I woke at 7am the first time I slept at Jon’s apartment.  It was a Saturday morning, and I figured he wouldn’t stir for at least another 3 hours.  When I  rolled over, however, I found him watching CNN and sending emails on his laptop.   He kissed my forehead and hopped out of bed:  “You’re up — Let’s get coffee.”  I wiped the sleep from my eyes and thanked my lucky stars for finding me an early riser.  Two mugs today, please.

We crossed the street from our downtown apartment and entered the coffee house on the corner.  I just about keeled over when he grabbed The WSJ like a reflex.  The WSJ is my favorite paper.  

We ordered two black coffees, snuggled into a booth, and divided the paper.  We spent the next few hours reading out loud, swapping stories, asking for opinions, and laughing over the same events.  We occasionally turned away from the paper to indulge in some quality people watching.  
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This is a long story, Reader, but I’m trying to convey the magnitude of our first, seemingly ordinary, Saturday morning together.  Three years later, the Saturday morning routine has become a relationship habit — we wake, brush our teeth, and then we go searching for caffeine and news.  

We were in Chicago this past weekend, and even though we were on vacation, we woke Saturday morning and went searching for the local coffee shop, hand-in-hand.  The power of our relationship ritual was too great to be broken by something as simple as a vacation.  The consistency of our ritual, of the shared morning, coffee, and paper, is something that we look forward to and depend on.  We repeat this Saturday morning tradition, time and time again, because we both find it so fulfilling and happy — down to the smallest detail.   All of our Saturday mornings play out exactly the same way, in a sort of domestic haze, simply because we wouldn’t want them any other way.  We found a moment that we choose, time and time again, to recreate exactly.
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Do you have any relationship rituals?  Families, couples or friends?  Is there something that you look forward to doing, time and time again, with the people dear to you?

Here are some pictures from the weekend Chicago trip:
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the interesting inheritance

i like waking up before the rest of the city — early enough to take a walk and watch as the city wakes up.  everyone seems perfectly at peace as they travel to work, get ready for the morning, and prepare for their activities.  as the day progresses, people seem to tire or get excited, but the morning is generally characterized by a kind of peaceful simplicity that i’ve always enjoyed.  i tend to wake before dawn, and i  try to read a bit or go for a walk before i begin the day.  when i’m at the cabin, this usually means that i venture off to find a hidden path where i can think/read/journal for a bit.  i snuck out before sunrise today, and i was delighted to find this trail:

Imagei traveled to the lake, and then i began the delightful business of finishing my current read, the interestings.

Imagethe novel follows five artistic friends through high school and into their careers to discover what makes someone successful — talent, motivation, connections, money, or some combination of things.  unfortunately, however, the novel is told from the perspective of an incredibly jealous and callow woman, and it gives the read a negative tone.  i wanted to jump into the book and ask her to be happy for her friends, or, at the very least, to only worry about herself.  perhaps the book was such a let down because i finished a dual inheritance last week – an incredible book with a somewhat similar plot.  a dual inheritance follows two friends from their senior year at harvard through their retirement, and investigates how the nature vs. nurture battle alters the course of our lives.  if you’re deciding between the two, read a dual inheritance.

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