Blue Room Miscellany

1. I decided to decline the invitation. I composed the same note that I did yesterday, and for whatever reason, today it felt right to hit 'send.' I passed along some names of folks who I thought would be good for the project, which felt like a small way of living more abundantly. Also, I have realized in this process and not articulated adequately, what a 'quality problem' this is to have. It's very humbling to have people solicit your ideas on a project. I'm always a bit flummoxed by it. I mean, I'm just this gal...

2. The Writing Revs met today at Starbucks, and in case I had time to kill before or after, I brought the book Stealing Jesus, which our church book group is reading this month. While in line I began thinking about how with Kindle, we won't be able to see what one another is reading, in coffee shops, on the Metro, etc. Kindle and other e-readers will give us some privacy, but will it come at the expense of the serendipitous encounter?

I have a friend who is always meeting interesting people simply by bringing her Bible or other religious books to the local coffee shop---people are curious and will strike up a conversation. I admire this friend for her ability to collect stories and interactions---she is a magnet for quirkiness. I am not, for whatever reason---temperament, a more reserved vibe---but sometimes I'd like to be. I feel like I'm shutting myself off from some cool stuff by projecting an "in my own little world" vibe. (Other times, I rationalize that I live an accessible life as a pastor and a mother of young children, so I'm entitled to be left alone at Starbucks.)

Not more than two minutes after having this thought, a woman came up to me, curious about my book. She's a clergywoman in the UCC who does a lot at Washington National Cathedral. We struck up a short conversation and she gave me her card. How about that! A small bit of succulence in the stodgy old 'burbs of DC.

3. Just as I admire my friend the story magnet, I also admire those neighborhood mothers who leave enough margin in their schedules that they can let their kids linger at the playground following preschool, or collect random neighborhood kids at their house. I aspire to be one of those women with the open door and the sauntering gait, who give their children an unhurried childhood. The best I can do is to try not to shoo and nudge them too much as we chuff along from place to place.

Today I got a glimpse of a different way. I picked up Margaret and her friend A from preschool and arrived at A's house per my carpool duties... but his mother had been detained and was 20 minutes away. "Whatever works for you," she said apologetically when I called her, "You can wait there, or go to your house, whatever." I'd been in meetings all day and was feeling pressed, but I made a decision not to be bothered. I wish I could say that mental adjustment was easy. But we came back to our house for an impromptu play date, and by the time she arrived, we were playing on the porch with the bubble machine.

Each of these small events gave me a frisson of energy. Have you experienced delight in something small, today or recently? Share in the comments.