profound peace by Alannah Finlay
So, as you all know I have been hosting a writing contest through the Halcyon Girl. I kind of got swept up with classes and being busy again, so it took me a long time to decide on the winner. I am also extremely indecisive and felt honored to even be able to read multiple pieces of writing from some really cool people. But, I came to a decision.
There are TWO winners of the writing contest. I am publishing one of those winners’ pieces right now, and another will be posted a week from today. Both are wildly different but equally beautiful. To find out the other winner, you’ll just have to stick around until next week…
This piece, titled “Profound Peace,” was written by Alannah Finlay.
She actually submitted two pieces but there was something about the story she told that really stuck with me… Have a look for yourself. Congratulations, Alannah, and thanks for the submission! Get pumped for a prize in the mail!
Sundays are intended for leisure, family time and peace of mind: this particular Sunday consisted of exhaustion and unrest for me, without rhyme or reason.
I go to yoga every Sunday morning, but even the serenity of the quiet, warm room
and the Savasana at the end accompanied by a warm towel placed on my head could
not ease my mind.
I walk my dog, the ten pound embodiment of pure happiness, twice a day. Gazing
over to see his tail wagging with great force and excitement in the passenger seat
makes me smile for a moment; I am so grateful for him. Walking through our favorite
reservation as we always did, I didn’t feel my usual happy, giddy gratitude for the
beautiful forest I was gazing upon; I couldn’t help it. I felt uneasy. This itching feeling
that I would be this way for the remainder of the week’s end stirred inside me.
I zoned out completely on the drive home, the sweet sound of my all-time favorite
Led Zeppelin song flowing through my speakers. I love to house-watch (yes, this is my
version of people watching) and fantasize about the history of each one: Who lives
there now, who used to live there, is there someone being held captive in the
basement? I’ve always been infatuated by what goes on behind closed doors. Oscar’s
small barks and tail wagging as he tried to jump out of the window of our moving car led
me to follow his gaze. Two elderly women were sitting outside of a pretty little colonial
home selling what appeared to be tomatoes. How could one possibly pass the two
without stopping? There is nothing I wouldn’t do to see another person smile. I have
always been this way and it tends to get me into a bit of trouble, but I can’t help it.
I pulled into the cobblestone driveway. Oscar jumped out and immediately ran over
to the women, expecting to be doted on, per usual. A wooden sign with the words
“Tomatoes For Sale: $1 per LB” hung on to the table for dear life by a single nail. I
chatted with them about what you would typically discuss with women over the age of
75. They complimented my freckles and pointed out my Rudolph red nose, as the late
August sun had gotten the best of me. I asked if I could purchase tomatoes for my
mother. They were beside themselves with happiness.
“You know you’re the only person who’s stopped by all day?”
“Yes, we’ve spent all season growing them and wanted to share. They’re delicious, I’ll
promise you that!”
I bought 4 paper bags filled to the brim with tomatoes. Such a wonderfully bizarre
feeling it was; as soon as I got back in my car, I felt like a different person. I couldn’t
stop smiling as these women had unknowingly had the most profound effect on me: the
two put things into perspective for me.
It cost me $4 to change that day. Sometimes it costs nothing, other times it costs
more. Whatever it is, all you need is one small human interaction to change your entire
outlook on life. Sitting in the kitchen, I watched my mother rinse and slice the gifts I had
bestowed on her earlier that day. She was thankful I had thought of her when buying
them, of that I’m certain. She continued to ask me why I couldn’t stop smiling. I couldn’t
quite explain it to her at that time. She was unaware of the true value of these tomatoes,
for they had indirectly granted me the gift of profound peace.
Comment on my Instagram or let me know in the contact section if I should host another one of these contests!