Thursday, May 1, 2008

Perception=Reality: Livin' the Dream

I realized today how much perspective has to do with...well, how you perceive things. "Profound!" you say? I know, I know. I will try not to rock your world with too much more genius today.

I recently reconnected with a friend with whom I've been out of touch for several years. For the sake of indulging in my laziness, I am now going to post the pertinent parts of our last few emails:

Me: What’s been going on in your world? Not much new here. Hubby is working like a mad man, and I have been doing the exact opposite!

Long Lost Friend: So you do nothing? How's that work? You always were wanting that sweet deal and to do nothing in Hawaii... it's seems so dirty and wrong! I like that idea! No really what's a day like? Do you love it there?

Me: Dirty and wrong-LOL! I suppose it probably is, but I like it too! How it works is I do a lot of reading and putzing around in my yard with the dogs at my heels. I also watch way more TV than I should, but…whatever. I do my best to keep the kitchen presentable and keep on top of laundry, but other than that, I am still not ever going to win the June Cleaver Housekeeper of the Year award. Hawaii presents a unique set of housekeeping challenges. [Blah, blah, blah]

LLF: What did you do today? I must live vicariously!

Me (The next day): Yesterday was an exciting day. I went and got a new military ID. Woohoo! My old one’s only been expired for a year. I spent all this time doing my hair, makeup, etc. to absolutely no avail. I now have a picture of me looking high that will probably get me stopped at the gate every time I try to go on base for the next 4 years. After that, we went to the commissary, an absolute must out here-$8 for a gallon of milk? No thanks. Then we came home, ate dinner, watched “Sweeny Todd,” read for a little while then went to bed. And…end scene! Whew!

Me: (A few minutes later and in a new email): Sorry, I didn’t do a very good job of helping you live vicariously. Let me try again.

Upon awakening, I had a nice, fresh-brewed cup of coffee and a piece of chocolate cake. Because I can. After leisurely checking email and surfing the ‘net for a while, I spent a good hour or so indulging in my beauty regimen in preparation for my photo op later in the day! Hubby and I then enjoyed a scenic drive along the windward coast of Oahu, taking in the beautiful blue water and the occasional small waves rolling in gently along the shore. After traveling through the majestic Koolau Mountain range, we drove onto Hickam Air Force Base. With its palm trees and 1950’s architecture, you could almost picture yourself walking through a picturesque postcard depicting the Hawaiiana of yore. After arriving at our destination, we strolled through the balmy weather to the imposing personnel building where I received my new ID. The black-and-white picture just accentuates that feeling of yesteryear, and I look like I’m having a great time to boot! After that, we visited the commissary, a privilege bestowed upon a select few in this nation! I couldn’t believe the prices! If we had bought all this stuff “on the economy” it would have cost twice as much! After putting away our groceries, we enjoyed a cool beverage and a lovely, home-made dinner (Italian-how worldly!). While we digested our savory meal, we enjoyed the lively but brutal tale of Sweeny Todd, the Demon Barber of Fleet Street, while the tropical trade winds blew gently through our windows, keeping us comfortable throughout the night. After a peaceful night relaxing in front of the television, we retired to our bedroom, where we both read for a little while before falling asleep to the distant, gentle sound of the waves crashing onto the shore a mere 400 yards from our window.

So, you see what I mean? Okay, so I haven't discovered anything the ad men haven't known for years, but still. The two descriptions above really are both completely accurate, it's just a matter of how one chooses to interpret the situation. It's easy to become complacent about where you are in life, and I'm glad that I have people to help remind me to be...uncomplacent (and grammatically correct) now and then.

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