Yesterday I went grocery shopping/errand running by myself.

In case you missed that last part...I was by myself.

Solo mio.

Since the Mr. is gone most Monday thru Fridays, I do most of my errand running with two small sidekicks. I really can't complain too much, since they are 1)adorable, 2) mostly quite well-behaved, and 3) mine.

However, there is something to be said about going out & shopping/browsing without extra responsibilities.

And that something?

It is heavenly.

I was able to process my thoughts in one long stream of consciousness (instead of juggling my thoughts + 3 year old's questions + 1 year old's squealing requests), which was relaxing in and of itself. I was able to choose which stores to go to based on my interests (instead of which ones had the 5 point harness side-by-side carts for extra travelers). I was able to browse at a snails pace (instead of weaving my way around the isles in an effort to avoid certain displays or distractions)...and I did.

I noticed other conversations as they passed me by and wondered if others did the same when I was walking around in almost-constant conversation with my little guys. I noticed the tired Mom who walked past me and the toddler who couldn't handle another minute in his seat. I noticed the hard work of the store's employees and the holiday scents wafting around in glistening glee. I noticed sparkly things that would likely have lured me in...before saving for big wish list items became such a priority.

It was fascinating, all the noticing I was able to do...even in the parking lot. I noticed those carts out of place (pet peeve, oh yes it is), puddles on the ground, and then out of the corner of my eye I noticed something else. A piece of red, rustling in the wind on the next car over. I looked and my heart melted. 

A red rose, tucked lovingly 
under the driver's side windshield wiper.

I smiled. And *may have* teared up a bit.

Such a simple thing...a lone red rose. The recipient would surely be surprised when he/she found it, and the giver was likely anxious to receive contact once it was discovered. I imagined a couple...madly in love...or perhaps it was an apology gift after a short-tempered disagreement. Or maybe it was a guy crushing on a girl who was oblivious. The giver will never know the moment I enjoyed while glancing at their gift exchange...or the memories it exploded in my own heart.

I thoroughly enjoyed those minutes smiling in my car...
... given to me by a lone rose
on an afternoon that I was out and about, alone.


Linda said...

I am glad you didn't snatch that rose! And while it was great you could go slow, wasn't it also amazing how FAST you could go...
ah. yes.
i remember!
it is such a pleasure!
( and why sometimes I don't take my cell phone with me shopping ) so I can NOTICE.

that was a nice post. Thankyou!

It's Me - Jen E! said...

I also had the opportunity to venture out alone this weekend. At one of my stops, I had to pause and wait to get back into my car as the mom parked next to me was trying to wrangle her 3 not-so-happy toddlers into the car. She was clearly frustrated. After securing her kids, she closed the door, looked my way and apologized for the delay. I told her it was no problem, I understood. She asked me if I had kids and I replied I did but that they were at home with Dad. She smiled and said "Lucky you". I had to pause on that one because while yes, I do enjoy my "me" time, I also have 3 wonderful kids who, at times, enjoy venturing out with me for various reasons. Thankfully, that stop was one of my last for the day and I would be home soon enough!