My eyes opened to darkness. The sun had yet to rise, yet I was wide awake. This was unusual for a person who often finds it difficult to leave bed in the morning. Not wanting to waste the gift of early morning hours, I quickly rose before my body could sink deeper beneath the blankets. I picked up a book and read until the night sky was edged with light. Inspired by the magic of the hour, I took my sneakers from the closet and prepared to go chase the sunrise.
As I stepped out into the air, I felt a chill that hinted of autumn. After the heat-wave we had been experiencing, it was a welcome feeling. Flanked by the waning moon to my right and the sun to my left, I quickened my pace as I rounded the corner and headed for the nearby hill and perfect sunrise view.
I wasn't the only person who had ventured forth into the dawn. As I walked on, I exchanged a greeting with every person I passed. The girl nearing the bus stop gave a shy smile at my hello. The boy by the school responded brightly to my good morning. A woman walking her dog saw me smile from across the street and heartily waved. Climbing the slope, reflecting on the exchanges that had just transpired, I was overcome with joy. So simple and pure, it amazed me how small a connection could create such a big feeling. My eyes crinkled with delight at the corners as I turned towards the sun peeking over the mountains, my body warmed from the inside out.