Do you know what happiness feels like? I thought I did and perhaps the definition I operated under at those times in my life were appropriate to the person I was at the time. This weekend I discovered a new flavor of happiness that still has me processing. Let me give you the set up.
Woke up to a list of to dos that I knew needed to be completed before I hit the road for my 20 Year Sorority Reunion. If my plan had been limited to making the road trip to Savannah and back it would have been very simple; however, I knew this trip would include prospective client meetings in Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee over a two week period so thoughtful packing was essential. I also had to make sure I got an oil change for this trip and still fit in my hair and nail appointments too. The plan was to finish all this up and tidy the house so I could leave Little Rock early Thursday morning and drive to my parents’ house just outside of Atlanta.
Had to bump my hair and nail appointments back because of how long it took to get the car squared away. Started to freak out a little bit reminded myself that it’s important not to sweat the small stuff. Super glad I slowed down for a number of reasons because I thought of some things I might not have otherwise that helped to improve the quality of my road trip. Hit a little traffic leaving out of Little Rock at 4:00pm and a nasty patch of Tropical Storm Barry while on I-22 near Tupelo but otherwise the day went well and I opted to stop over in Birmingham to rest.
Woke up feeling refreshed, grabbed some breakfast and pointed my car towards Atlanta. Just outside of the city I chose to divert and cut through West Georgia because the traffic was back up really bad and the weather was so beautiful and accommodating. One thing many of you may not know about me is that I have some deep family roots in West Georgia around the Warm Springs are. While I didn’t afford the time to all the way to Warm Springs, I did pause in Newnan, Georgia, soak in the beautiful scenery of small town Georgia at its finest.
Made it into Savannah ahead of the rain 🙌🏾 and managed to slide in some time with my family and try out Bull Street Tacos for the first time. (Yelp Elite review to come)
Then it was on to my reunion. We stayed down in the historic district which was a first for me. Walking around my birth city as a complete tourist was surreal in many ways. My childhood memories constantly commingled with the realities of gentrification and in the end I opted to embrace the beauty of the experience. Savannah is a fine old town that deserves and needs to be cared for and I cannot waste energy on being upset that much of the money that is leading the way for the revitalization of the city is from non-natives.
We had a wonderful time of reflection and sistersharing and I would have kicked myself if I had missed this gathering. There was a moment sitting around the table at dinner when my emotions were running so strong I had to fight back tears. It was the beauty of the moment of being with these women who I truly love as sisters and whom I have missed having in my every day life more than I realized before this weekend. These sisters of mine are brilliant and passionate and loving people and we run on the same kinda fuel if you know what I mean. Thankfully we have technology to help us stay connected but this weekend persuaded me that I am going to commit to more real time, in person visits as life affords me the opportunity to do so. We’ll figure out how to make it work.
Oh I know y’all don’t think I’m about to give a detailed account of the reunion here now. 😂
I am rather proud of this shot I got of River Street at night.
The day started off with airport runs and goodbyes as everyone prepared to move on to their next destinations. I scooped up my cousin, Ruth, and we made a beeline for breakfast and the beach!
It was on the drive up to Atlanta that I literally saw the sign that I needed to share this happiness leveling up with you all. I was driving so I definitely didn’t risk crashing to photograph it, but I couldn’t shake the message if I tried.
Laughter just started pouring out of me because I got hit upside the head with a coconut (thank you for that, Neikeita) with a revelation. Many people see signs like that one and make all kinds of assumptions. The message that came to me from that sign was not a call to pull over and purchase fishing bait and a delicious pizza snack. What hit me was the simplicity of the message and how in this new season of my life my happiness will be tied to much greater simplicity of action and purpose.
May you each find your live bait and fresh pizza Moments when you need them.
Marta C. Youngblood is a writer, education and social entrepreneur based in Little Rock, Arkansas. For more information on her current projects visit https://about.me/MCyoungblood.