The Good, The Bad, and The Lovely

I went running yesterday, smelling France.

Honeysuckle was in its light-yellow heyday, scenting me as I ran up and down the hills of Le Rouret. Clambering roses spilled over into my pathways. All good.

I turned a corner and smelled the bad. Cigarette smoke. No matter how long I’ve been here, I still have a hard time with it. I can’t seem to get used to it. Not that I view smoking as immoral, but that my wee nose just doesn’t like its acrid-ness. It’s everywhere, around every corner, in every restaurant, even in the non-smoking section. There’s a bunch of hoopla these days about the book French Women Don’t Get Fat. Want to know my sub-theory? French women don’t get fat because many of them smoke. The surgeon general hasn’t made his way here, apparently.

But as I was wallowing in my smoke complaint, the lovely assaulted my nose–a reason I love France. More honeysuckle perfumed my run and I suddenly forgot about the smoke. I remembered the beauty of the day, the privilege it is to be in this country, the ability to run in the mornings.

Life is easier if we sandwich the bad between the good and the lovely, isn’t it? If we press our complaints between blessings. I want to live a thank-based life, want to see the beautiful in the mundane. I’d love to hear your stories today, how you saw the lovely amid the hard. Let me know what you think.

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