As I climbed out of the swimming pool on Sunday, soaked in chlorine and a bit of rain, and the sun of June I knew I had little things to be thankful for. Swimming season, and swimming pools and glorious tans. Empty pools on rainy mornings. The minor miracle of the hot sun, and yet cold & chlorinated water. The coach who gives you advice for free. Watching the perfect dive into ice blue. And most of all, the peace and calm of a perfect swim.
And, a perfect song. And, a perfect run. The push, shove & gasp as you run on treadmills in hotel rooms, and fancy gymnasiums, and filthy Bombay sand. With the sea your only spectator, the waves your constant cheer.
We do so little to thank the in-betweens.
The book that soaks up all your waiting time at the airport lounge. The iced chocolate coffee that balms rejection, yet again. The story you chance upon on the Internet, that sounds just like yours. But with a happy ending. And, the Combat Class that milks you dry. Of your anger, and your fear, and your lowly revenge.
All the little things that take up your day, or what remains of it from the 9-6, the traffic snarl, the supermarket queue, and makes it all seem worth your while. Humming through an extra long, ice-cold shower, praying fervently in a sauna, holding hands at a signal, frying onions to glistening golden brown. A message from an old friend, a song-of-the-day share with yet another. Dancing past midnight in your hotel room. And shopping all Saturday, just because…
The little highs matter.
For when you (and me) transition from one big moment to another, we learn sometimes, things take time. People, and big moments, and the dreams you chase don’t fall away, and into place in moments, or weeks. But years. Long and grating years without shortcuts and fairness and sensibility.
And yet, you are here to stay.
To the time between closed doors, and open ones. To half-open doors, and doors still closing.
And all that keeps you going.
Thank you in-betweens.