What does it take to be happy? A combination of peace of mind, stability, security, health, family, friends, comfort, helping others, fame, fortune, and a good prospect of a successful future would seem like a good formula.
This week I discovered that happiness can come from a sprinkler.
I was waiting on the side of the road in my air conditioned car in the afternoon for a real estate agent who was meant to show me a house for rent. It was sweltering outside in the Dubai summer heat as the sun was setting. I noticed a sprinkler up ahead not quite aimed right and was instead directing its water on the road. I slowly inched my car forward to the direct line of water falling in a beautiful arc on my windshield. I put the wipers on. Music in the car was soft and soothing. Grunt, eeeek, went the wipers repeatedly. I closed my eyes. It was raining in Dubai in July. I was the only one enjoying it. I opened my eyes and watched, as I did countless times as a kid growing up in Lebanon, the hapless drops of water racing down the windshield only to be shoved mercilessly by the wipers. I rooted for the drops to get to the bottom part of the glass and out of harm’s way. I always did. It was like watching the same movie and wishing for a different ending. Grunt, eeeek. Methodically. Melodiously. The familiar sound flashing me back to a childhood filled with the games I imagined being played with wipers in the rainy days of Lebanon. My dad would be driving. I would sit in the middle of the back seat hugging the two front seats to watch the rain drops being swept to oblivion while listening to the chatter of my parents. No seatbelts were necessary. People drove slowly back then, especially in the rain.
A sharp horn. The agent pulled his car up beside me. Are you ready to go? “NO!” I thought. “Can’t you see I’m enjoying the rain?” I had to pull myself away but must have smiled happily for the rest of the evening.
I need to mark my GPS with the coordinates of that blessed awry sprinkler. Before someone catches on and fixes it, that is.
This Adele video has not one drop of rain, but I love the song.