Last month, while on vacation, Jen and I had a chance to do something I've wanted to do for...about 35 years. We got to see my favorite band of all time in concert. Chicago! The band that was so popular when I was in Jr. High, Sr. High and College in the 70s and 80s. I loved their musicianship. Their brass is amazing. They weren't your typical hard rock band of the 70s. All with Masters Degrees in their instruments, from DePaul University... For 2 hours and 10 minutes they performed hit, after hit, after hit. Memories flooded into my mind of my growing up years...basketball...runn'in with my high school buddies...old girfriends...my current girfriend :) We sang along, smiling. We clapped along, smiling. We looked at each other, smiling. I met Jen in 1975, just after Chicago had really exploded in popularity and becoming mainstream.
Their songs are "set in time" in my mind and bring back specific, times and places when I listened to their songs, mostly on the radio, and...yes, 8 track tapes. Yikes. I now watch them perform on Youtube. Not my favorite hit of theirs, but I was listening/watching them do "Make Me Smile" and I realized, they, make me smile. Their music makes me smile. "Beginnings" "25 Or 6 To 4" "Saturday In The Park" "Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is" "Just You And Me" And, the beautiful, "Color My World" There are still 4 original guys in the band who have played together for over 40 years. Wow! Youtube 'em up...you'll smile too, if, you're over 45 that is.
What else makes me smile?
Puppies. Kittens. My kids succeeding. Riding my bike on a beautiful day. Being in that "zone" in a race and feeling like I'm flying effortlessly. Standing on a poduim after a race. Feeling unlimited gratitude to God for His kindness to me and for the strength He gives me. Seeing Jen do something that makes her smile. Seeing athletes I work with accomplish what they never thought they could. All that, makes me smile.
It was a strange connection that night at the concert between Chicago's music, and my face muscles. It's like they were connected. We'd had an amazing day that day. We woke up that morning in Burlington, VT where I raced at USAT's triathlon national championships and qualified for the world championships next year in New Zealand racing for Team USA (Thank you Lord!) Then as soon as I was done we left and drove 3.5 hours to New Hampshire to the concert, and, we smiled for another 2 hours. It was one of the best days of our marriage. I LOVE that lady!
What makes you smile? Think about it. Get in touch with it. I know I'll have an eternal smile on my face once I leave this world and listen to the eternal concert in heaven. Instead of there being one band on the stage and thousands in the crowd listening, they'll be millions on the stage, singing to...an audience of One. THE One. THAT makes me smile.