Busy People, Thank You

Be careful! Watching this video may give you an ear worm you may never ever forgive me for. I’ve had it stuck in my head for 23 years — ever since my kids were toddlers and watched Richard Scarry’s Best Busiest People Video over and over. Every now and then the theme song resurfaces and I can’t stop singing it.  Today was one of those days.

When people normally say they are “busy” it has a negative connotation. It is often another word for stressed or unavailable. But not to author Richard Scarry.  No. Busy Town is filled with lots of busy people. And they are all soooooo happy to be working. They all play their part in making life work for each other….and they do it with a smile. Today, I was in Busy Town, thanks a lot to my scooter (a.k.a. the Blackberry Blast).  There is something special about riding a scooter…something different from riding a bicycle. You notice different things. Busy things.  You really sit up and take notice of the rest of the working world.

Normally, commuting in the Cranberry Crush I am in my own zone, listening to my self-constructed playlist for my self-constructed life.  But on my scooter I become part of the working landscape. I talked to the construction workers and thanked them for paving the road. It was so smooth to ride on. Thanks, busy people.  I chatted with the gas station lady, who gave me a free cup of ice. Thanks, busy people. I talked to the security guard at the gate for my office as he stuck his head out to say hello. Thanks, busy people. I conversed with another motorcyclist at a stoplight on his way to work. And a person in a car smiled and gave me a big wave to let me go first at an intersection. I felt like I was in Busy Town. Suddenly, people weren’t just shadows of themselves behind a piece of glass, they were Richard Scarry’s busy people.

When I arrived at the camp I’m volunteering at this week, there were hoards of more smiling busy people. Busy snack people. Busy game people. Busy music people. Busy, busy people. And not in the Stepford Wives kind of way….in the Richard Scarry way. Sweet. Kind. Patient. Real.

Today, I’m glad to work in Busy Town. Not a bad place to be.

We’re Not Here To Look at Rainbows

faint-rainbow

A faint rainbow crying out for a passing glance.

This  rainbow caught my eye tonight as I took my dog out on a walk. It was 7:00 PM and the sky was just barely spitting rain. Across the street from my house poured the sounds of summer—the crack of the bat and voices chattering in the field. Girls softball practice. Really little girls. I was surprised any of them could fit a softball in their hand at all.

Now stopping during a walk isn’t something I usually do. But tonight, something tugged at me and I felt compelled to pause and glance at this faint and rare sight in the sky. And I wasn’t the only one. As I stood gawking upward, I heard the frustrated coach yelling at the girls, “COME ON! WE’RE NOT HERE TO LOOK AT RAINBOWS!”

It wasn’t a spectacular rainbow. In fact, it was pretty hard to see. I think that is what made it so special, so attractive. You really had to look hard. You had to stop and be still to appreciate it.

It got me thinking about all the faint, but spectacular, “rainbows” I might be walking quickly by every day. I’m pretty sure when my kids were little I missed quite a few. It is hard to see the little faint rainbows of life when you need to fix breakfast, make lunches, get to work, run the Cub Scout meeting, make cupcakes for the school party, deal with a frustrated teacher, coach the team, help with homework, cook dinner, exercise, do your own homework, rinse, and repeat.

“COME ON! WE’RE NOT HERE TO LOOK AT RAINBOWS!”

Sorry, coach, I beg to differ. We are here to look at them. Seek them out. And stare long and hard. They disappear way too soon.

softball-girls

Little girls with pink softball socks and golden hair kissed by the sun. That’s at least one more “rainbow” I saw today.