“After all,” Anne had said to Marilla once, “I believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens but just those that bring simple little pleasures, following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string.”
~ L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Avonlea
“Tell me about your perfect day,” I asked a dear friend, across a coffee table on a blissful afternoon. We were having coffee at one of our favourite places in Nashville. Outside, the overcast gray sky hung dreamily in a wide swath, as if an artist had taken the largest size brush, dipped it in white and then gray, and swiped it across the sky, covering last night’s mistakes and yesterday’s regrets. A Do-Over, and so the sky waited, waited for blue, waited for new things to happen. We were in an in-between state, and it seemed the right time to ask the question.
Inside the coffee shop, the bright and brassy espresso machine spun and whirred away, releasing fragrant and steaming coffee. Delicate succulents in cheery yellow and pink pots rested on white wooden square tables, and the light wood décor gave the small space an airy ambiance. Our hands wrapped around warm coffee cups, a perfect little latte heart etching its form on the memory of the day. Maybe I was in a blissful mood, maybe I was happy enough in that moment to ask the question, but nevertheless: perfect day. Completely free-form. “It can be anything,” I reassured her, “It can be a day you would like to live someday, it can be a day you remember from the past. It can start in any way that you want, it can be fantastical, it can have people in it that you haven’t met yet. Just dream away.”
And so began a project that I’ve so enjoyed these past few months. I’ve kept it going for mostly selfish reasons; I love to hear about people’s perfect days because it lets me dream as well, and because the people I ask light up so much when they talk about it. I treasure catching just a glimpse of their hearts, their hopes, and their dreams. It’s been an eye-opening experience, and it’s made me realize all over again, just how much we yearn for some of the same things: love, peace, contentment. It’s also shown me how valuable my friendships are – oh, they are so special to me. But more than that, it’s encouraged me to learn more about the people around me: both the acquaintances and the strangers.
I hope you enjoy reading this series as much as I’ve loved compiling it. I made the days into poems because the structure was easiest that way – the quotes felt more real in poem form somehow. I hope that reading these might help you to dream a little bit, if only for a moment or two, in your day, and to recognize some of the perfect moments that can exist in daily life. The entirety of a perfect day might be hard to completely replicate, but there is the possibility of living out parts of the perfect day, spread out over our lifetimes. We can stop and revel in it for a minute or two.
“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives. What we do with this hour, and that one, is what we are doing.” ~ Annie Dillard
Let’s go for a walk in your perfect day:
Just a few questions I would ask …
- Would you have a soundtrack for your day? Or a certain song you’d like running through your head?
- What would you like your last thought to be right before you fell asleep?
- If you could have someone narrate your day – an author, actor or actress, film director, photographer, or artist, you name it – who would it be?