Whimsical Thankfulness

Christmas tree, unadornedI’m having a Thankful Thursday.

There was no guarantee of this when the day started with me oversleeping my alarm by nearly an hour. And by the end of my workday things weren’t looking promising. That’s when I realized that I had lost an earring–one I really like. That made me late leaving work. And that put me in rush-hour traffic.

No picnic that.

But when traffic on my expressway backed up and came to a grinding halt ahead of me, I bailed out and escaped onto side streets. Still no picnic, I assure you; but it turned out to be just what I needed. Because not half a mile from the expressway, I drove past a restaurant sign that changed my attitude and saved my day. The sign was for a bar/club called …Touch of the Past.

Isn’t that charming? Would you ever in a million years have thought to name a bar or restaurant Touch of the Past? I would not have. (Though I do want to open a restaurant someday called Bob’s for Quiche–perhaps more on that some other day.)

Touch of the Past added a touch of whimsy to my day. And it made me think of another business sign that I saw last weekend that also made me smile: “Esther’s Place: for such a time as this.” Truly.

EsthersPlaceSuch a time as what? I don’t know, and I don’t care. I personally hope that Esther’s Place is run by a time lord’s companion. That seems right, doesn’t it? I didn’t have time to stop in and shop before closing time, and I had my freshly cut Christmas tree stuffed into my car, so I had to satisfy myself with a picture.

Esther’s Place puts me in mind of something else for which I am thankful, and that is small businesses, which add character to a town and a neighborhood and keep us from all leading cookie-cutter lives.

We in the United States have just observed Small Business Saturday, a made-up holiday if ever there was one, but one that I can get behind as a reminder to support the local businesses that provide flavor and variety in our lives. I didn’t actually do any shopping on Small Business Saturday; I try to avoid all stores during the mad shopping weekend that follows Thanksgiving. But I did get out to a local pub for a burger and pint that night–after returning home from getting my Christmas tree and discovering Esther’s Place, in fact. That felt right to me.

My Christmas tree remains unadorned in my living room, as shown at the top of this post. The lights should go on tonight and tomorrow, and perhaps the ornaments over the weekend. But I like it this way, too. Simple, pretty, pine-y.

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