Monday, June 25, 2012

A Dozen Sparks

You know how people from big cities, especially those in the North, have this reputation? It's like you walk around half afraid that someone is going to kick you in the shin with a black Louboutin stilleto, just because they can.  Or they'll jump in front of you to get a signature on a petition and get hostile and fist-wavy if you don't want to? Or when you ask for directions they'll pretend they didn't hear you and walk faster? Or they'll sit next to you on an empty metro and talk really loud into a cell phone about the funny thing Janice did and how she doesn't realize how lame she is?

Well, I can't speak for all cities, but in Chicago, that's just not true. And although I've noticed this before, it continues to surprise me when it happens, for some reason. But today, I made my way from the metro to the hotel in beautiful smiley weather. 
Then when I ran out for a snack, a lady in a vest with a petition form jumped in front of me and said...."I like your purse." 
Now, already, I'm having a good day.
Well, after hours of working, when the quittin' bell rang, I headed down to catch a train to a vegan restaurant (yes, they have those here!)  I asked the concierge where I caught the train and he walked me to it, helped me check my fair card, and sent me on my way. Even if he wasn't hot, this would have been a total "aww" moment.
And as I waited with the masses for the brown line to Kimball, one of them, Dennis, took the leap from stranger to acquaintance. We chatted about friendliness and places we've lived and how one chooses between vegan and carnivore, and even once you've made that choice, what would your options be at Fogo de Chao.  
When I got to Karyn's Cooked, I enjoyed a lovely dinner and not once did I have to ask for ingredients because they've taken care of that for me. Turns out seitan is pretty good even if does sound kind of evil.
Alas, on the train ride home, there weren't masses. At first it was just me. So I got to sight-see along the brown line all the way back, and I didn't even miss The Bachelorette!

Some days are extraordinary for one big event that marks them unique.  Other days are sprinkled with so many sparks of joy that they shine just as brightly. This was one of those days.

Thank you, Jesus, for vegan chefs, for Dennis and the hot concierge and their friendly banter, for company stipends, and for the lovely day.  You give, you give, and you give some more. All my love.

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