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La Liga de Las Americas

Sunset in the present moment


By David Vásquez


The days seem to be growing longer.  I can remember a time when all that mattered was playing in the sand; everything faded away.  Now there are bills, work, and commitments. This day seems longer than the others. The bills are piling up, the work is going into overtime, and I have to go home to finish schoolwork.


The only break I had that day was when I was in my car on my way home. Fortunately, it was a fairly warm day so I had the windows down.  I realized that I had no variety in my days. Always the same streets and the same stop lights. At this point I was sitting at the same street light I had sat at probably hundreds of times; I pass this place sometimes twice a day every day.  But that day was a little different. There was something in the air.


As I sat at the light I noticed the sun was setting. I had never noticed it from this spot before because I am usually home by this time; today my work had taken a bit longer.  There was a show of gigantic proportions for everyone sitting at the light at Reynolds and Angola. As the sun set, it shot light through multiple layers of clouds producing a dazzling array of colors from orange to pink to red to purple. Some clouds were cumulus, cotton-ball looking clouds.  Some were high-flying, feathery, cirrus clouds. But each cloud had its own texture and shade.


This was about the time I realized something. I was experiencing a once in a lifetime event.  Never again will I see what I was seeing at that moment. Never again will the clouds and sun light line up just so and produce such a brilliant display. Sure there will be other brilliant displays and perhaps some more brilliant, but never will this exact sunset be reproduced. It could be argued that whoever was there at the light with me that day saw the beauty I saw but no one could have seen it from the exact perspective that I did.


My mind began to race at this point and I realized something else: every single experience I had, from every second of every day was a unique experience only to be had by me. It is really a mind blowing/life changing idea. I only wish that everyone could think of life this way, and even I at times, because I think the world would be a much better place if every second was a once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity.





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