Moments of Beauty

Why is it when we’re someplace so surreal in its beauty, or in a moment so perfect in its entirety, we close our eyes? I catch myself doing it often, yet I’ve never realized how illogical it seems. But somehow it isn’t learned… It’s as natural a reaction as one can have.

Right now my mind is saying “Sure, what you see is beautiful. But stop. Feel the wind and taste the salt in it’s touch. Listen to the waves breaking in the distance. Fill your lungs with air and lift your head to the sky. Say ‘Thank You,’ out loud, for this moment. And feel the gratitude so tangibly it gives you chills.”

I open my eyes and realize they are filled with tears. The completeness of this moment is so overwhelming–and the joy is so intense–the chills continuously ripple down my back, perfectly mimicking the tidepools vibrating in the breeze in front of me. A single ghost crab is scuttling over mini mountains of wet sand at low tide. A solitary white bird is jackhammering its beak in the shallowest pool, enjoying its lunch.

I realize with a jolt that a man in a bright red shirt is 10 feet to my right, walking alone down the beach. He’s the first person I’ve seen in an hour so it startles me… And in this green and blue moment I’ve been living in, his shocking red shirt almost makes me fall off my driftwood chair. I think I’d forgotten red was a color.

I shield my eyes as I look up and ask, “How are you”?

As he strolls by he replies, “I’m wonderful,” with a smile so genuine I know he means it. This moment we’re in is too real for automatic responses or niceties. I watch his red shirt slowly disappear around the circumference of this tiny island.

And it’s lovely to share the beauty of this place, in a few seconds and a handful of words, with this stranger.. because thats all it needs.

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Gili Air, Indonesia

“You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment.”  ―Henry David Thoreau

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