Today I rode out to Rittenhouse with my sights set on a guitar store. It is absolutely unbelievable how calming and refreshing I find walking by myself amidst the hustle and bustle of Center City to be. Shortly after we moved here, I found it to be one of my favorite things to do. All alone, no accountability, completely encompassed in my own anonymity.
Anyway, I meandered down Sansom and stopped in my tracks once I hit my destination—I had been there before. Roughly five years ago, with my great first love, when I had no idea I stood in Rittenhouse, we had sought out the same tiny little guitar store. I was laughing to myself as I walked in at how wonderfully serendipitous my life is sometimes in the smallest ways. Of all the grand businesses and hole in the wall shops of this fantastic city, I stumbled upon one visited by my former self with a former love with former hopes and ideals. Today, I found my way back, an evolved self with different love and ideals and hopes. It was once of those moments, you know? When you’re briefly visited by the notion that absolutely every element in your life has changed, and you’re happy still. Happier, even. More solid and believable and determined. Even closer to what you’re supposed to be doing and who you’re supposed to be doing it with. And yet, the place had remained seemingly unchanged at all.
I went in and introduced myself to the shop owner, explained my cause and need for strings that did not include playing music, and he gave me a full grocery bag full of electric and nylon guitar strings for free. He liked and respected my vision even though it was unexpectedly different from his. And he invited me to regularly stop in for more free strings whenever I needed them (although I think I’m set for about 500 orders now).
As I walked out, I shot a text to J telling him of my random rediscovery from five years ago when our lives were entwined. His text back was positive encouragements and affirmations and kind words with the promise of even more strings once he had some to give me to add to my now volumous collection. Again, one of those moments—time and circumstances pull you apart at the seams, but each time you return to where you’ve been, everything is as much the same as you allow it to be. I’m always so grateful for that.
Life, you guys. Today was splendid.