Craving the Unexpected

The new year is finally here. To some, it’s the final year, mainly the crazy excitable type. For others it will be business as usual, mainly the dull hum-drum type. Me, well, I’m looking for more. I’m ready for things to happen, not end, and I won’t be happy with the same-old-same-old.

Do you believe in signs? Symbols that randomly occur in your everyday life that could possibly mean something more than just the run-of-the-mill coincidental oddity. That might mean I’d have to be comfortable with some unseen force screwing with me. Be it God, Goddess, Universe, or Belly Lint.

Regardless, in the last month I’ve seen decidedly strange things. I’ve already told you about the red ball. It was odd, yet comforting. Something as innocent and playful as that could dance and twirl harmlessly through dense morning traffic. Not innocence lost, but innocence delighting in its own being.

Then on New Year’s Day, I had another, shall we say, sighting. First, for the those who don’t know me as well, let me tell you that I live in the city. A city in the middle of a heat-sweltering desert. And in that city, I am centrally located. There are a few mountains close by, but of the ugly rock and cactus variety.

Now where was I? Oh, yes. I was carting my family back home after our final Christmas celebration. That’s right, Christmas on New Year’s. It was well after dark and things were pretty quiet on the roads. On a side street, just before really getting into traffic an animal decided to cross the road, right in front of me. Was it a cat? A dog? No.

It was a raccoon!

Never before outside of television and film have I ever seen a raccoon, let alone in the middle of the city. Everyone in the car saw it. The raccoon crossed the road into someone’s yard and disappeared into the bushes. In a city where I thought I’d seen it all, she throws this at me.

How cool is that?

Then just yesterday on the way to work again, I passed a truck hauling a horse trailer. Not out of the ordinary. There are plenty of horses even here in the desert. A I was passing it, a white and tawny snout stuck out from the side of the trailer, its lips pursing the chill morning air. It looked like it was blowing kisses at the passing cars.

Granted this last isn’t as out of the ordinary as the first two, but it still held that off quality I’ve been noticing lately. And maybe that’s it. Maybe I’ve been noticing things more lately.

After that first weird encounter with the ball on the road, I must have become more aware of my surroundings. Possibly searching for more of the off and interesting. In a way I feel like the fatties in Wall-E when they finally get distracted away from their video screens and notice the pool for the first time.

Sometimes I forget that it’s a weird world, and I’m glad I get these little reminders. Is it a sign of what’s to come this next year? I don’t know. But whatever it is, it’s got my attention.

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