• Virginia Tolles

Cherish Your Happy Moments

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It’s good to keep our happy moments close to us. They help to see us through moments that are not so happy: the stressful moments, the sad moments, the confusing moments. Here are some of my happy moments:


Last fall, my husband and I had just finished having lunch at a Mexican restaurant when the train came through. I stood on the sidewalk in front of our car and waved to the engineer, who waved very broadly back at me and gave a friendly toot of the train’s horn. He’ll never know how happy he made me.

A few years ago, an online friend in New York posted one of his photographs on his Facebook page. It gave me an idea for a story, so I wrote a short-short (3 pages) and sent it to him. He liked it and sent me another photograph, so I wrote a short-short (5 pages) about it and sent it to him. I wasn't happy with my second story, then, but now, I find that it really speaks to me. So do the memories of having shared that day online with my New York friend.

​Thirty years ago, this year, while working for Air Force Publications, I was honored by my colleagues. They knew I like chocolate and celebrated my birthday with an ooey-gooey chocolate cake from the Watergate Bakery. They knew I took lots of Vitamin C and gave me an orange as large as a grapefruit. They knew I was researching a book on the C-141 StarLifter and gave me books and posters that they had published. They took me to lunch at the Officers Club. Sgt Dave, our computer guru, remembered the problems we'd had with computer bugs by giving me a cartoon that showed a group of bugs gathered around a computer monitor while one pointed and exclaimed, "There! That's the man who has been causing all our problems!" Bless my Air Force colleagues, one and all.

More than thirty years ago, a year before we moved there, I was in Washington, visiting my cousin. She had to work, so I caught the Metro to Bethesda, had lunch at O’Donnell’s (which shared the name of a family in my writing), then took a bus across the East-West Highway, through Silver Spring, and on to the end of the line in the College Park / Greenbelt area. I was the only passenger remaining on the bus, and the driver asked where I was trying to go. I told him I wasn’t going anywhere, in particular, but I had seen the downtown sights. Now, I wanted to see how the real people lived. He was so impressed that he paid for my return ride to Silver Spring. Bless his heart.

What are some of your happy moments? Write them down, and keep them close for when you need a pick-me-up.

Copyright (c) 2019, Virginia Tolles. All rights reserved.

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