We had stopped to get gas one more time. We had been driving for 10 hours this last day of our travels and I decided to walk into the store…more to stretch my legs than for any other reason. Crossing the gas pump lanes, I made eye contact with a young girl who was pumping gas into a small older model car. I smiled at this girl and she smiled back…a big beautiful happy smile.
I continued walking and casually said, “Hi. How are you?” I didn’t expect much of an answer from her because most people give a quick simple answer without pausing what they are doing BUT she was different.
This young girl was not only different than most too-busy-to-give-you-much-thought people but her response to me stopped me in my tracks. Upon hearing my question, she threw open her arms, tilted her head back a little and with true happiness in her voice and a huge smile on her face she enthusiastically answered, “Living the DREAM!”.
What a great answer and what a great attitude! I didn’t take another step. It was as if my body halted all forward motion on its own accord! She had taken me by surprise and I loved it.
I could relate to this young girl! Her joyful attitude is completely what I wish we could see more of in this world. Without even thinking I enthusiastically responded, “Absolutely!”.
We smiled at each other for a couple of seconds and I started walking again. Everything within me was screaming, “Wait! Talk to her! Don’t walk away yet! Photograph her!!”
Why photograph her? Because of her happiness…it told a story…and so did her clothing and appearance. She was a free spirit…someone who looked for joy and found the positives…she was living life to the fullest that she knew how and spreading happiness along her journey.
As I continued my walk toward the store her friend came walking out and smiled big at me as we passed. That did it! I turned around and went back to talk to them.
I asked them if they live in Colorado…one does but the other does not. They told me their names…Summer and Colleen…and in only a few short minutes they had happily and freely told me things about their lives and their dreams. They talked to me as if we were longtime friends. Colleen told me that they are Gypsy Girls just “Living the dream and loving life” and what they want out of life is happiness and for others to be happy.
I asked them if I could photograph them and with excitement they said, “yes!” …and smothered me with hugs for asking. Man, they made my heart smile!
After photographing them together I wanted to look more closely at Summer’s hair. She was creative, anyone could see that at first glance, and her hair had caught my attention. You could tell that she had spent time on it and I even wondered for a moment if the style kept her from sleeping well. She had one long thin braid, called a rat tail, going down her back. This braid had metal bottle caps bent in half, like clamps, around the braid and running the length of it. At the base of the braid she had a small crocheted Batman, cape and all, which I believe was meant to be a key chain ornament. She held her braid up, smiled big and said, “Do you like my Batman?”. Her bubbly attitude was priceless.
In the middle of her braid I noticed a very specific bottle cap, Left Hand Beer, and wanted to photograph it. She happily agreed, again, to let me photograph her. She even took her hat off so I could clearly see all of her hair and the tiny star tattoo beside her left eye. She was beautiful and I told her so…I also told her that I loved her style. In hearing me say this Colleen stated, “Your body should be your work of art.”.
I couldn’t stop the huge smile on my face as I agreed with Colleen…Be it the way we dress, the way we style our hair, our piercings and tattoos or the lack of, the way we take care of our bodies with nutrition and exercise…it is all an art and I had never stopped to think of it that way. I need to do MUCH better with my body and the art that it should be.
These Gypsy Girls are living their dreams and using their clothing, hair and bodies as forms of expression. Don’t we all wish we were that brave and free-spirited. I bet you do, just a little.
The Gypsy Girls had to get back on the road. We said our good-byes with honest good quality hugs, just as good friends would, and Colleen said to me, “You are the best! I love you.”. I smiled and told her that I love her too. You can never hear that you are loved enough and I am a firm believer of that! Just ask those who know me best!
Turns out our gas tank was not the only thing filled up during this stop. Because I was paying attention to all things around me, and took a moment to speak to a stranger, my heart was also filled. It was filled with happiness over two free spirited young girls who popped into my life only for a few minutes. They are happily living their dreams and making the most out of life. I hope they are met with goodness, kindness, happiness, unconditional love and prosperity.
Are you paying attention as life happens around you? I hope so because if you are you will find joy in the most unlikely places and circumstances!