The strangest thing happened this morning. Everyone I met on the early morning drop off was happy. What’s the secret? Mother’s loading 3 or more children into cars with smiles on their faces, men chatting happily with small children in carseats behind them, the lollipop man was smiling, someone let me out and smiled at me. It was all very peculiar.
I spent the short drive back wondering what I was missing. Do I just usually not notice people’s exuberance at starting the day? Was I earlier than usual and my fellow grumpies had not set out yet? Was I missing the declaration of peace between Israel and all their Arab neighbours? (I don’t listen to the radio news because a) I hardly understand it and b) Wheels on the Bus always takes precedence in my car) Was it just because it was warm, unseasonably so, and the sun was shining? It was clocking 26 degrees at 7.45am so we are in for a scorcher, by 11am everyone will be too hot and yelling again.
Apparently March 20th is the UN’s official Happiness Day, so we only have a week to go before we can all smile for no reason save for the fact someone told us it’s Happiness Day. I was reliably informed through a FB status update that it was the UK’s Happiness Day a couple of days ago although I must confess I can find no evidence of this on Google – Elly that radio station had you fooled. I am taking all of these clues and today’s smiley school run as a sign of something, what, I don’t know, but it has got me thinking about what is it that makes people happy? Or more specifically why can’t we be happy more often?
So what is it that brings happiness? Health, love, family, friends, wealth (enough that money is not an issue – is that possible?) and the one that I believe can make you happiest in a moment is hope. The times in my life when I have been the saddest the thought that I haven’t got anything to look forward to was the one thought that I couldn’t shake, even though in reality it probably wasn’t true. The promise of something good coming, the promise of a change or an improvement be it a fresh coat of paint or a new haircut, a holiday, a visitor, a new job, a pay rise, something simple. Without hope, we have nothing, someone famously said so I am thinking that perhaps everyone’s smiles this morning were not due to their all-encompassing self contentment, more that the sunshine and warmth was germinating hope.
I am feeling pretty happy today, I have hope for a change for my family and my daughter has a temperature. Ha ha I am not happy she is sick, I am happy we get to have a day off together without the rowdy boys and my head spinning in 3 directions. What one might term ‘quality time’ (and to be fair she really doesn’t seem that poorly at all). So we’re off to do our chores together and she is happily loading the washing machine as I type. Happy days indeed.