by Phyllis Capanna © 2012 joyreport
Okay. The Joy Report is not about performing or looking good, so I’m just going to tell you. I did something really goofy today, but it made me really happy. I pretended I was a bus driver in my own town, and I called out the stops as we approached various important places in Oakland, Maine: the Early Bird Restaurant, Blake’s Hardware, Buddie’s [sic], the flower shop, Oakland Pharmacy.
And then, I kept going. We — I — went down the Belgrade Road, and I called out where I thought people might be getting off. You know, Axtell Lane, the Budweiser bottling plant, Town Farm Road, which is where I would be turning right. But other people might want to connect for Belgrade, Belgrade Lakes, Mount Vernon. Or continue on to Manchester, Winthrop, Sidney, or Augusta.
And, of course, my last stop was camp, but others might be connecting for Rome, Smithfield, Norridgewock, Madison, New Sharon, and possibly as far as Farmington! Then as I was making my way down the camp road, I announced to the remaining passengers that the last stop would be our camp. “All passengers will disembark! All passengers!”
Honey-Bear seemed to know exactly what I was talking about. She stood up and started panting out the window, as she will do when we get near our destination.
I thought I did a pretty good job. I thought how great it would be to have a job where I could drive and yell at people periodically.
I could be creative about the way I called out the stops. I could make it into a song.
It could be a poem. My ride to camp could be a poem. I like that.
Improvisation is one of my favorite things. That’s what I was doing today. I was making something out of my usually unconscious commute that I never saw was possible and that will never be again.
When I’m awake to life, I live each moment differently, so the same commute becomes a different commute. By simultaneously listening in and listening out, I find a call and response that carries me easily into a natural delight.
The fact that I am not joyful one hundred per cent of the time must mean that I’m not always improvising. There are surely times when I’m going through something as if I’ve memorized it, as if it’s already happened. I’ve gone unconscious.
I’ve always had it backwards. I’ve always thought that if I could just memorize my lines and deliver them perfectly I’d be happy. I’m finding out that it’s the exact opposite. What I really need to do is ditch the script and concentrate on being awake.
The minute I feel myself delivering my lines I should stop and look around and find something to fall in love with, like I did today. What I fell in love with today is the way things have a rhythm of their own and a melody, and I don’t necessarily know what it is until I’m living it.
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