The sun was a fiery orange. It ducked beneath the trees just before 7:30 p.m. Tonight, I was there to witness the graceful swoop from visible to hidden. I was present, really present, sitting on the curved black park bench as the lone spectator.
I began to appreciate the beautiful details in everything around me. I heard Creedence Clearwater Revival blaring from inside a quaint wood-sided cape and imagined a middle-aged man rocking along in the den inside. I laughed at the bark off between two neighbor dogs separated by a chain link fence. And I was amazed by how the sprawling patches of black-eyed Susans I drive by nearly every night seemed so brilliant and triumphant as this humid, 90-degree day winds to a close.
I was a day late but it was the best 33rd birthday gift I could have given myself.