You are beautiful, America

I took a slower than I intended jog yesterday and thought about how much we have to celebrate in this great country of ours.

The air felt perfectly warm and the luxurious post-surprise-homemade-banana-pancakes-with-fresh-strawberries timing of my run made me grateful for the season that produced the berries, the holiday that allowed me to savor the pancakes, and the man who whipped them up.

Mostly, though, I was grateful for the kind of peace that allowed me to hear my feet pounding the pavement, geese swooping up from the water, kids laughing on playground equipment, and neighborhood dogs barking a cheerful hello.

A train crossed my path as I angled along the river, and I watched a small boy in a giant straw hat wave to its conductor.

I am old enough to savor the kind of peace I found yesterday morning, to respect its fragility, and to understand its cost.

I hope, amid the fireworks and smokey barbecues, that you all found a few moments of peace as well.

Happy birthday, America. You’re more beautiful than you know.

How cute is his little boy and his mom waving at the conductor of this train?
I had plenty of time to appreciate the light shining through this simple flag as I jogged up to it on my route.
Later, I spotted this golf course all dressed up for the occasion.
You’re not perfect, America, but you are beautiful, especially on the sweet, peaceful morning of your birth.

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