A Perfect Day
Annie awoke at exactly 6:00 a.m. on Saturday morning. Today was no different than any other Saturday, but her cozy bed beckoned her to stay a few minutes longer. As she lay in the stillness of the morning, a feeling of gratitude filled her heart. I am a lucky girl, Annie thought to herself. No matter how hard life has been, I have always had enough of everything, and have had love all around me. Yes, I am a lucky girl, indeed!
As she stepped over her dog to get to the bathroom, Old Blue began to chase something in his dreams, for his twitching legs and whimpers were sure signs of an adventure. A smile stretched across her face as she gingerly bent down to stroke her best bud. Aches and pains were a daily occurrence these days, but they never kept Annie Pierce from making the most of every moment. Today, she and Sally, her best friend, would go visit Sally’s horse. The drive to the country, the smell of recently tilled earth and the “horse” experience were all things that helped her weariness fade. “Today is going to be an exceptionally good day, I do believe,” she giggled. As Annie sat on the patio drinking her morning coffee, she closed her eyes and listened to birds chirping in a nearby tree. What a beautiful sound and what a beautiful day, she thought.
Soon, she was dressed and waiting for Sally on the front porch. The sky blue Volkswagon Beetle convertible pulled into the driveway, and in the blink of an eye, the two girls were on their way to the country with their hair blowing in the breeze. As they pulled up to the farm, Frankie, Sally’s horse saw them get out of the car and met them at the pasture gate. Immediately, Annie gave the gentle giant a big hug and gave his soft nose a kiss. “Sally, I couldn’t be happier. This day is just perfect,” she gushed. Before too long, Annie grew weary, so she sat quietly and watched her best friend bathe and groom her beautiful gelding. As the two girls left the farm, she took one last gaze along the white fence line and through the gorgeous horse filled pastures. “Sally, have you noticed how peaceful and beautiful it is out here?” “Yes,” Sally replied. “You taught me how to observe and appreciate every moment Annie, and I will always be grateful to you for being my teacher.”
The two best friends then drove to the beach and dined on a fresh veggie plate for lunch, took a walk on the beach, and last but not least, indulged themselves on an ice cream cone dipped in chocolate. As they arrived at Annie’s house, Sally could tell it was time to let her friend rest, so she made sure Annie had everything she needed, gave Old Blue some fresh water and bid her dearest pal farewell. “Until we meet again, Annie P.”
Annie lived another six months, but cancer eventually won the battle. At her funeral, Sally spoke about her best friend through a cracking voice and streaming tears. “I thought I was living, until I saw my best friend dying. She changed my life, because she showed me how to appreciate every breath, how to embrace every experience, negative or positive, and how to truly live in the moment. I now know how to live. So I will say to you what Annie said to me. Take every opportunity to experience love. Know your animals love you unconditionally and learn to love as they do. Appreciate your life; for it is precious and unpredictable, and I can promise you that if you start each day in gratitude, it will make for a much better day than if you don’t. Annie will now be that whisper of wisdom, that subtle voice of reason and the constant love I carry in my heart. Part of her, Old Blue, will remain with me until he leaves to meet her on the Rainbow Bridge. So, I will say one final time to my beautiful, courageous friend … Until we meet again, Annie P.”