Three Peaks and a Valley #12: A Day in Northampton and at the Park

This series, Three Peaks and a Valley refers to three positive moments and one negative moment that happens during a twenty-four hour period of my life. When I’m feeling down, my mom tells me to remember one positive and one negative thing about the experience: a peak and a valley.

Three Peaks and a Valley aims to outweigh the negative with the positive.

Three Peaks and a Valley is a regular miniseries that, by sharing my own moments of joy and vulnerability I hope that you’ll think about your own.

PEAK: My sister and I went to Northampton this afternoon looking for cheap clothing at thrift stores. Northampton is this funky town in Western Massachusetts with a long line of store fronts on either side of the street. It is a good place to go for unique clothing, food, or to see a concert. Frankly, it tends to be a little overpriced, even at the thrift stores, due to its proximity to the Five Colleges.

We did not find anything we liked or fit (It is hard to find clothing when you’re 5’9″ and 6’1″ women!) but we had a good time going around to each store and sampling the free lotions and things.

On the way back we stopped at Dunkin Donuts for $1.59 bagels and Alexa joked that we should do a driving tour of all the Dunkin Donuts shops in our town. Our town has at least five Dunkin Donuts.

PEAK: I went to the park to swing on the swings. I somehow convinced Alexa to push me. It was fantastic. A rather punk looking teenage boy with long hair and spiked shoes was swinging nearby us, listening to metal music and screaming along to the lyrics. Screaming. Every time he swung backward he flipped his hair in time with the music.

He wasn’t half bad, but all the moms pushing baby carts and little kids jumping around the playground set (across the field in this fenced off area) were staring at him with open mouths.

Honestly, it made me happy that this guy had the freedom through confidence to be himself. I was a touch envious.

Plus, watching a bunch of mothers get flustered satisfied that rebellious chip on my shoulder.

PEAK: My mother picked up a salad for me on her way home from my trip. I asked for mine to come with a “disgusting amount of pickles”. I told her to order it with those exact words. When it arrived, it did indeed have a disgusting amount of pickles. A ridiculous amount, even. It was a dangerously high level of sodium and vinegar. Just lovely.

VALLEY: I had plans to go with a friend to go to a little movie theater in Amherst that was playing Hitchcock movies, but they canceled. I was bummed because I had this special showing marked in my calendar months in advance. I then wasted half of my day by going back to bed.


Me, dad, Lex… WWII Jeep in the background (the real star of the show)


As always, share your peaks and valleys with me in the comment section below! I love this series. I now actively look for positive things to do to fill my positivity quota for the day. I’m still a pessimistic piece of work but we’re getting there.

xoxo, Allyson


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