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It's the Little Stuff That Gets You

Words and Images by David Finley


 It was a nice temperate, partly cloudy day. A slight breeze stirred the air carrying smells of baked goods. A symphony of chatter, birdsong, and classical music hung behind me as I sat on a wooden bench near the waterway.

Study of a Sparrow. Oil Pastel on Paper

 It was a great day to be spending time just outside the International gateway at Epcot. 

 I had no plans to go into the park that day. Rather, I had brought some sketchbooks and art supplies intending to capture the likeness of the buildings in the French Pavilion, which happens to be visible from just outside the park.

 But, it wasn't the lush array of French architecture that the Imagineers had collaged into one place that charmed me.

 A small gathering of sparrows were congregating on the ground near my bench. They bounced in various boing-boing patterns, chirping noisily in conversation. These sparrows were at play, bickering, singing, and seemingly dancing all at once, with the behavior intensifying every time a benevolent wind would bestow a gift of bread crumbs into their circle. It was a reprieve from my troubles and burdens, which were heavy at the time, granting some much needed perspective.

 Sparrows are common birds. I've seen them in every state I've lived in. Yet, the diminutive birds had won me over, causing the buildings of the French Pavilion and all of its splendor to be long forgotten. 

 Inspired by the show the tiny birds had given me, I took out my red sketchbook and some oil pastels, and made the drawing from today's post.

 This drawing now hangs in my living room, serving as a reminder of levity and how meaningful the tiny insignificant details can be. Life can be heavy and depressing, but it also has its own good. The good just doesn't tend to blow its own trumpet like the bad does. 

 So, know that the good truly is in the little stuff. It could be a great meal, a cigar at the beach, or petting the family cat as he purrs in your lap. Even in the darkest moments, don't be surprised when some little bird catches your eye and changes your entire perspective.

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