I love murals. It’s been a long time since I’d been in GJ before last week, then I was there again today. I hadn’t seen this one, which decorated the flat grey wall in front of the meter on 5th Street where I parked for five minutes to dash into The Hog and the Hen for a Fowl Play sandwich after a morning of appointments. I’m grateful for a grateful attitude as I began this long day. Grateful to Neighbor Cynthia for the portable compressor that enabled me to bring a low tire up to safe pressure, grateful to Neighbor Mary for coming to check on Wren in my absence, grateful for light traffic and few delays, grateful for patience more than once during the day, grateful for a quick in-and-out at the dermatology office to get stitches out, grateful for a jovial neurologist and a fascinating series of tests that revealed nothing wrong with my central nervous system; grateful for getting some errands done on the way home including voting and mailing some important cards.
The day was tiring, but without a grateful attitude it would have been grueling. The sandwich lacked cheese, but included Turkey, Brie, Apple Chips, Lettuce, Tomato, Cucumber, Pickled Red Onion, Cranberry Aioli, on Thin Ciabatta. I asked for no cucumber and extra aioli, and while it was delicious, it simply wasn’t big enough. The apple chips added a surprising crunch. There was a moment on the drive up there through the high desert, with the window down and the radio playing The Eagles, that I felt as carefree and light as I did the first time I drove across the country through a continually unspooling novel landscape. I used to love to drive the back roads. Now I’m grateful for a fleeting nostalgia now and then, and solid sense of belonging to home.