One day I lay in the soft winter sun beside my best friend. We had eaten well, we were surrounded by friends, and we were comfortable on a blanket on the grass and soaking in the sun. It was at this point that she dropped a phrase that I will never forget – she sighed and in a content and breathy whisper declared that we were in the midst of a “golden moment.”
That idea stayed with me after that and ever since then I’ve been storing up moments in my mind that I see as golden – having a braai with one of my best friends on a public holiday, holding my boyfriend’s hand as we stroll under the stars, enjoying the simplicity of a swing and a summer dress… Each moment, with so many different faces and places and variables, contains a memory and a feeling. Each one takes me to a moment that, for that second, was perfect.
They’re like those Polaroids that are so popular on facebook at the moment. A single moment, bleached by the sun and worn with fond ware, that is encapsulated in a single piece of paper and ink.
Yesterday, as I sat on a picnic blanket surrounded by friends, I had another golden moment. And this time I promised myself that I would immortalise this moment. It was nothing special – a picnic with friends. But it was something majestic – a picnic with friends. And as I thought about this simple yet striking moment I had a realisation: sometimes, the most simple is the most spectacular.
I guess it’s a little like the “less is more” concept, but instead of seeing it as a total “less”, it’s more of a material “less”. All we had there was a blanket, food, and each other but what was there in the abstract was almost more tangible than the blanket we sat on. The air swarmed with love and fondness, happiness and care-free ease. Golden moments are moments when there is no gold, but the moment is worth more than any precious gem ever could be.
I can’t imagine anyone being bereft of a golden moment. Even now, I’m hoping that you are thinking of one – of the people you treasure, the place you made the memory, the tastes and the sights and the sounds. That memory can never be taken from you! That moment is yours forever. On the days when love seems so very elusive, that moment is still there. On the days when friends are distant, that moment is there. At times when hope seems gone, that moment is there.
Maybe it’s time we stop storing up our gold – our money and “precious” things – start saving up our golden moments. When things go awry, I would much rather turn to a friend than a fund.
It’s time to start looking for golden moments and seeing just how much worth there is going free. Just because countries are in economic crisis doesn’t mean our hearts should be too!