I'm here at Starbucks on a pretty day, inside because it allows me a bit of privacy.
Right now I'm in one of four big chairs surrounding a table. A father and his two teenage daughters sit at the other three chairs. They are sharing the usual father and daughter banter, laughing and clearly enjoying each other's company. An elderly man walked by, bent over almost at a ninety degree angle, but however difficult it must be for him to get up and around, he still sported a suit and tie and walked on his own without the help of his two younger companions, who walked just enough ahead of him to appear as if they weren't keeping an eye on him. He paused and rested his hand on the first daughter's chair, caught his breath, then made his way to the next daughter's chair and rested on hers for a bit. I looked at the father and he smiled at me with kindness, sharing my sympathy for a man whose body was struggling to keep up with his spirit. I smiled back. The man and his daughters were a Middle Eastern family, and it struck me that here we were on 9/11, in a climate where so many people are spouting the reasons that we can't get along and threatening to burn Qur'ans while others burn American flags. And yet, here was a quiet moment shared between those very two cultures, who had a the same reaction of sympathy, understanding and compassion for another human being. Our moment won't make the news. It's just one of millions of quiet moments that happen every day between people of every culture who have so much more in common than the publicized differences of a few extremists.
I'm still at my job, though I'm not sure for how much longer. My contract was just extended until November 6th, I think. Right now, the department that I work in is going through a lot of changes and merging with another branch of the company. There is a full-time senior copywriter job available, but when I asked about it, I learned that it has management responsibilities, which I do not want. I'm just not management material, which is a trait I'm extremely at peace with. It isn't because I'm not capable, but because I can't stand the politics and what comes with it. Management has never been something I aspired to be. Ever. Whether contract or full-time, my salary is good for what I do and my lifestyle without the pressures of managing for some big company that would happily chew me up and spit me out.
Tomorrow is Shannon's birthday celebration at his sister's house. Should be a great time. He got me some really neat gifts for my birthday and I hope he likes what I got him. My mom had a big birthday on September 3rd, and I got her a gift certificate to a day spa in Baltimore, good for a European facial, and spa manicure and pedicure. Also included tip so she wouldn't have to worry about that. She's going to my step brother's wedding end of September and figured it might be a great way to kick off the celebration. I really wanted to go, and we tried to work it out, but the wedding is in Mystic, CT, and with my job possibly ending soon, I need to work every week that I can. I would have loved to see Dan and Jen get married, and of course really enjoyed seeing a true East Coast water town.
Lots of other things, but I'm finishing this post at night, and am about to slip into bed and snuggle down to listen to my audio book. Wonderful inventions, those things.