After dropping Peter off at the airport today, I went to the library and got a pile of books. There's also a section where people can leave old magazines, free for the taking - I picked up a motorcycle one, since I'm trying to learn more about those. On the way back to the house, I skipped a clogged street, took a random detour, and passed a lake I'd never seen before. It was raining, so everything was gorgeous and shrouded in fog (and wet). I drove along the lake thinking "wow, that's pretty... I wish I could stop and walk around there for a while."

Half a mile later, I abruptly realized: I could! So I pulled a U-turn and drove back to the lake, stashed my car in a side street, and walked down the edge of the lake (it was gorgeous) reading an increasingly soggy motorcycle magazine and jumping on floating piers and reading "please don't feed the geese" signs. It was a lovely spontaneous pause, and I was quite content.

Got back to my car, started driving... something was rattling in the steering. Flat tire. Pulled over, jacked the car up, rolled out the spare, got as many of the lug nuts out as I could - the last few were too tight, and even standing on the wrench and jumping up and down (the maximum amount of torque I could apply) wouldn't budge them. In fact, it... somehow bent the screw thread of the jack (I now need a new jack). So I called AAA and went wading in the lake while I was waiting.

The AAA truck came and a guy hopped out, surveyed the scene, and declared jokingly that I didn't actually need him, I'd pretty much completed the job - then hauled out his hydraulic jack and power drill and finished up while I threw the busted tire in the trunk. I thanked him, we drove off, I drove home. At this point, I was soaked with rain and lake water (and sort of cold), and filthy - my jeans and tshirt and my hands up to my elbows were smeared with mud and grease from wading, from leaning against my dirty-and-wet car trying to shove the lug nuts off, from kneeling and sliding in the mud on the street to pump the jack up, from wrestling the tire and the spare into and out of my trunk...

Man, that was a great tiny adventure. Not a big one (not even a small one), but... it was nice, just to do that. To be free to do that, and to remember that I was free to be random and do that, and to go "wheeee!" and act on it. And the lake was absolutely beautiful - one section of it's lined with wildflowers, and the rain was making this grey mist rise up from the water, and fogged the far bank at the same time.

It's the little things in life that make you smile.