A Sense of Wonder

So, I watched The Little Mermaid last night for the first time in a long time. It is so good. There were a couple of things that registered differently this time, and one of them was Ariel’s sense of wonder.

Fathoms Below by John Rowe

She is constantly looking for treasures of the human world – and she is delighted and amazed by everything she finds. But this sense of wonder is even stronger once she is transformed into a human herself.

For those who have seen the movie, you remember the scene where she and Eric are riding in the carriage? And he does a double-take because she’s upside down and hanging over the edge, fascinated by the movement of the horse’s hooves? And then at the Punch-n-Judy when she pulls the puppet off the man’s hand because she’s never seen it before? Or when she’s pulling Eric through the crowds, pointing at everything?

And you know what? Even though this is perfectly ordinary to everyone around her and no one else is reacting in any way like her…she doesn’t care. She’s excited by the beauty, the novelty, the things everyone finds ordinary or mundane and she allows herself to feel it, to be excited and entranced by it.

And to be honest, I think that’s powerful. How often do we walk through life with our eyes glazed over by the ordinary-ness of it all – when, in fact, maybe it’s not so ordinary. Maybe there is still wonder to be found in the everyday – in the blue of the sky on a Spring morning or the sunlight rippling on the river or the smell of freshly baked bread in the metro early in the morning. Or in a cup of coffee by the office window at the start of the day.

There is still wonder, even in the everyday. Sometimes, a fork is actually a dinglehopper.

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