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Finding a snapshot of happiness

UNTIL recently, a couple of colleagues on The Herald were in the habit of posting, on social media, daily photographs of things that made them happy.

It was always, of course, the little objects or occurrences that made them smile. A pretty blue sky. A rainbow. A fresh cup of coffee. A sip of malt. Blossom on cherry trees. A late supper consisting entirely of fresh roadkill. That last one was possibly made up.

The project went under the hashtag of #100happydays. Ever late to the party, I've been trying to think of 100 little things that make me happy. I got as far as three. And, even then, it was a struggle.

Here's the list, for what it is worth.

1. Going to the cashpoint and taking out a tenner without a message flashing up on the screen to the effect that your account has insufficient funds. That has happened before, and always, naturally, a) when it's raining, b) when there's a sizeable queue behind you, and c) when the abruptness and the air of humiliation with which you leave the vicinity is a dead giveaway to everyone else that you've no money to your name.

2. When the digital recorder I use to record interviews turns out to have worked. I've had too many occasions, immediately after interviews, when I've pressed 'play' and been greeted by an alarming, stone-cold silence. The only thing to do in such circumstances is to smile brokenly at your interviewee, with whom you've just spent the last hour and a half, and who even now is standing up and gathering his belongings, and say, "I'm sorry, I know you have to head for the airport but would you mind terribly if we did this all over again?"

3. Getting home to find that the washing I put out in the morning has neither been soaked by rain nor used as an outdoor WC by the neighbourhood birds.

And that's it.

If pushed, I could probably add listening to old recordings of I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue. Or getting tickets to see Bob Dylan, pictured. Or thinking that this summer will finally be the one in which my hay fever doesn't leave me feeling more lethargic than usual.

So, six in all. How in the name of God could my colleagues even contemplate finding 100?

Anyway, you can read a summary of their favourite little moments in The Herald's Saturday magazine soon. If that's the sort of thing that makes you happy.

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