Every day I see something to make me smile. Today was no different.
On my way to the Parade to buy Mr B’s newspaper
(I know, I am a slave – but it gives me a chance to chalk up my daily walk and so feel virtuous for the rest of the day) I see a small, bright pink car with long, curly eye-lashes around its headlights. Altogether now – SMILE! I’m not sure
I would actually want a car with such an adornment myself and, if I did, Mr B would doubtless say: “Over my dead body!” or something far, far ruder. Nevertheless, it made me smile and I proffer a wave to the driver. She doesn’t see me because
she is craning her neck to see if any traffic is coming from the right. Probably just as well – though, let’s face it, she must have known the effect her car would have on passers-by, like me, looking for something to smile about.
Then, in the Co-op, where I had to call in to buy two carrots and some beans, I had to smile at the youngest member of a little family shopping there – she was all dressed up
as a witch in bright pink and purple. “I presume she’s a Good Witch?” I asked her mother, who retorted “Not so as you’d notice!” while hauling her littl’un away from the sweet counter. The Not So Good Witch
gave me a sly smile and slipped a tube of Smarties into her Mum’s shopping basket while she wasn’t looking. Well, it made me smile.
Youngest and the Middle of the Darling Daughters are on holiday at the moment (though not in the same place.) I am therefore missing my daily texts and the regular phone calls in which we set the world to rights – so it makes me smile to see the photos
they post on Facebook every day. Here’s Young Faris, on his first ever Foreign Holiday, enjoying five star luxury in Cyprus and turning the heads of his Adoring Public wherever he goes. And here’s Team Baldwin, on safari in South Africa and seeing,
at first hand, all those Documentary Animals that I’ve only seen on TV or in the zoo.
My favourite photo is of the Youngest of the Darling Daughters, leading
a huge elephant (see left.) On her face a beaming, Can’t Quite Believe It smile that takes me right back to the early days when she was small and her older sisters allowed her to play with Jemima the rag-doll. Made me smile too. Even without an elephant
of my own.
I needed something to make me smile because I spent the afternoon huddled over computer images from the Worthing Gazette dated July 1916 and indexing,
on a spread-sheet, every mention of people involved in the Great War. (See the web-page on the Great War Project if you want to know more.) There’s not much to smile about in the closely-printed pages of the Gazette. Almost all the mentions are of people
dying, or missing in action, or seriously wounded. As this was 1916, the articles reporting the saddest of news invariably talk about the “glorious dead” and their “final sacrifice”. I imagine the parents, wives and families of
these fallen heroes just wished with every ounce of their being, that they were back home, in one piece, and to hell with death and glory. I doubt they thought they would ever smile again.
I’m lucky. I can switch off the computer and return to the present and all the things I have in my life to make me smile. Today these included a pink car with eye-lashes, a Good Witch and a photo of a Darling Daughter with an
elephant. Tomorrow it will be Something Else Altogether.
What made YOU smile today?