Liz Flaherty photo

Gratitude and Curiosity

Every November, I do this thing on Facebook called 30 Days of Gratitude. I don’t know whose idea it was, where it came from, or how many people do it. I’ve done it for years, because it reminds me every day to be thankful and because it’s easy. I spend way too much time on Facebook, scrolling and keeping up with nieces and nephews and getting mad at political memes and wishing for the truth so that doing this one thing every day feels good. Feels right. And it’s easy.

Except on days when it’s not. Like this morning (Friday), when it’s so gloomy outside my office window that even the birds are silent. They pick at the suet in the feeder hanging from the clothesline and fly off in search of bluer skies. The cats woke long enough to eat breakfast, then went back to their naps.

I’m running a day behind—nothing unusual there—but my gratitude for today is for curiosity. As long as we are curious, we can find truths, beauty, reasons, and so much more. It’s when we wave dismissive hands and say “the heck with it,” that we lose track.

So, let’s talk about curiosity. Because I wonder so many things, some of them based on my admission that I spend too much time on Facebook.

• If you don’t like Hallmark movies, you don’t have to watch them. Why must you talk over and over about how terrible they are? Windo over the Sink Logo
• If you don’t like The View, you don’t have to watch it, either. Why on earth do you care if other people do? Until they take custody of your remote, it shouldn’t affect you at all.
• If you don’t like Dollar General or Walmart, don’t go there.
• If you get a bad meal or bad service at a restaurant, why don’t you take it up with the management rather than diss the business and its employees in the most public way you can find when chances are good someone was just having an off day. (That’s for the first time, even the second—after that, don’t go there.)
• If you feel marginalized—and, face it, most of us do at one time or another—why are you so eager to marginalize someone else?
• If gas is $2.59 a gallon at one place, how can it be $2.39 just a few blocks down the street? Maybe how isn’t the right word—maybe why is. How do gas station owners react to the suggestion they’re price gouging?

And that’s just the tip of my curiosity iceberg. I’d love to hear yours. I can’t be the only person who doesn’t understand these things.

And now back to where I started this morning. By this time, the birds have annihilated the suet cake. The cats are awake and watching the birds picking at the greasy treat, their heads going back and forth as if they were watching a tennis game. The sun is pouring warm and bright into the office window. I am grateful for so many things. The sunshine, my beloved cats, the side yard we occasionally refer to as a wildlife preserve. It’s easy to be grateful.

And I’m curious. How can the birds eat that lardy stuff? How do they know when to fly south? What are they talking about when they gather on the power lines? Do the deer really know they won’t get shot in our yard?

Some combinations are just odd, aren’t they? Gratitude and curiosity, though—they seem to go together.

Have a great week.


Liz maintains a blog that you can visit by clicking this link:

Get her latest Romance Novel Nice to Come Home from Amazon by clicking on this link:

Nice to Come Home To is the third book in the Lake Minigua series, following Every Time We Say Goodbye and The Happiness Pact.

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