Yesterday my campus was not a lively place. It was a place of too few hours of sleep, of last minute cramming, of deadlines stretched beyond their breaking point, of overwhelming stress.

I was walking to a department meeting, which is in itself not a cheery event. I was watching the somber mood of students, and out of nowhere, down a grassy hill came bouncing a young boy, 11 maybe 12. He was just bouncing and running for no reason. It’s called PLAYING. The word exuberance popped into my mind, tinged with a hint of nostalgia as in “What an exuberant little boy… I wish I were exuberant.” Instead I trudged to my meeting and then 3 hours later crawled out.

After my meeting I was catching up with some friends (not particularly exuberant ones, burnt out might be more accurate) and another friend walked by on his evening rounds with his little girl (oops big girl she’s ONE now!) in the stroller. We chatted for a bit with the baby with the wise eyes and the yummy bottle and they went on their way. When they came by a second time we saw her perk up to look at the birds that were hopping around on the grass. Her whole face lit up at the cool birds. My other friend was telling me about her grandson and how if it was him the birds would have fled. He doesn’t think birds should be on the ground walking. They are birds. They should fly. Duh! When they ask him what sound birds make, he flaps his arms. Exuberantly.

I wonder if exuberance is the domain of the young and the drunk only?

Maybe I am just exuberantly exhausted.


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