it's a spectacularly beautiful spring day in portland. one of those extraordinary days where the air smells sweeter and the colors are brighter and people are radiant... the best kind of day. i went for a walk/jog to the hardware store to pick up a paintbrush and on my way home i was stopped by a lovely and rather petite elderly woman. she was walking slowly in one direction, i was walking quite quickly in the other. she reached out for my hand and said to me with more more excitement than a small child on christmas morning, "aren't you glad to be alive?" in that moment, she made all of the sad and hard and stress go away and i looked at her with the most enormous smile stretched across my face and replied "YES, i really am!!!" then she smiled, and we both continued walking. i'll probably never see her again, but i'm certain i'll never forget her.