Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Touch of a Smile

It was Friday morning and I had a day off from work. When I came out of the building the sky had been washed to a fresh limpid blue, while the mellow golden leaves of mid-fall were still holding a few scintillating raindrops.

I felt happy for just being there. Everything around me struck my senses with a cheerful chord. In return, I smiled at them all.

At the doctor's office everyone practically beamed at me, including a nurse whom I had sometimes called Ms Grouchy behind her back. On my way out, people in the waiting room were smiling, and a kid handed me my jacket which I had left on the coffee table next to him.

The same stretch of pleasantness accompanied me to the nearby supermarket. I got smiles and cordial greetings from strangers. Two men in front of a barbershop even stopped their conversation just to say hello to me. When finally I sat down inside my car to drive home, I heaved an impressed sigh. Whew! Where did this torrent of good will come from?

From the smile I was wearing on my face, of course. I remembered watching a Swiss movie where a retired man wrote love letters to women and birds and blossoming plum trees then tied them to balloons to be carried into the sky. Basically I was doing the same thing, not with letters but with my face, and immediately I reaped the happy results.

There's a song by Helmut Lotti that I particularly like. It goes something like this:

Take it with a smile
For with a happy face
The world's a nicer place
Take it with a smile
Whether you win or lose
You got to show some style...

Smiling at the world might sound a trite idea, but it certainly worked for me at least on that beautiful Friday morning.