A Phantom’s Message
Today on my walk I saw many moments of happiness, joy and laughter along the way, but one thing stood out more than all others, because it was clearly a message to me.
I walk for two miles north along the boardwalk, to the very end, then turn around and walk the two miles back. Because I left later today, the sun was behind the taller hotels, so there were large portions of the walk that was shaded… especially by the time I was on the way back.
I noticed an elderly couple sitting on a park bench right in the middle of one of those portions of shaded boardwalk. The man was wearing a t-shirt and shorts, the woman was bundled up from head to toe, with a very large hood covering her head. She had an air of a phantom about her, she appeared so mysterious. I looked inside her hood, and saw her face, lit up with wonder, looking down toward the ocean, watching the waves crash upon the shore. Her skin was so pale, it truly appeared ghostly. I can honestly say I have never seen skin that white. It was obvious that she had never had the sunlight’s kiss upon her skin. I came to the conclusion that she had an allergy to sun, and that was why she was so well protected… and so un-tanned.
Her eyes met mine. Hers were emitting this intense joy of life and all that was surrounding her as she smiled at me, and I smiled back at her, with all my heart and soul.
As I walked away from her, and stepped out from the shadow of the building and into the warm sun, I stopped and turned my face towards it and felt the warmth upon my skin. I thought about how good it felt, I thought about the lady who would never be able to feel that, yet happily sat in the shadows looking out at it and soaking in the joy of life. I thought about an interview I was told of, with a survivor in Haiti who had lost a leg. He was asked about the loss of his leg. His response was: “Alive with one leg is still alive.”
I thought about how often our blessings go un-noticed. I thought about how today, I will celebrate my life, and all of the wondrous joys that are in it.
Won’t you come celebrate with me?