Sally in the Zen

Confessions of a Befuddled Zen Buddhist


I was at the gas station one recent morning, filling up my tank and cringing over the listed price.  So to distract myself, I watched the other cars and drivers come and go at the other gas islands beside and near me.

Hi, my name is Sally in the Zen, and I’m a people-watcher.

I’m watching with interest as a honking large candy-apple red RAM truck comes in and a petite lady driver jumps out.

I’m staring with wide eyes as a bear-of-a-man driver ejects himself out of his small beat-up Camary.

I hear the elevator music piping out of the outdoor speakers of the gas station.

I glance at the winding line of cars patiently waiting their turn at the car wash. 

And when I hear the WOO HOO, I turn toward this happy sound.

A lady was standing near the entrance of the gas station, waving her arms and shaking her hips, just dancing and prancing in place.  Her head is bopping to something that I don’t hear, and I wonder What’s the matter with her?

I look around her and there’s no one in sight.  No one speaking with her, and no car near enough that she could speak with.  I thought for a moment that she was trying to catch someone’s attention, as she continued to gyrate her hips and punch her arms into the air.  She emitted a couple more WOO HOO into the air before throwing her arms up, like she wanted to give the world a great big hug.

And then the moment is over and she starts strutting down the road.

That’s when I noticed that she was wearing sweats, sneakers and a bandana wrapped around her hair.  And on her ears were her white earphones to her iPod.

Witnessing a person unabashedly rejoicing in life at any given moment is a blessing.

And I’m the better for it.

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