Not Always What They Seem

I’m not telling you anything new when I mention that things are not always what they seem. Most of us know this, and most of us often ignore it. Life moves too quickly to stop and look a little closer. We have too much to do to pause and consider in depth.

Aquariums have a way of changing that pattern – at least, mine has for me. Case in point – the sun coral.

During the day, sun corals look like this:

But if you turn out the lights (or offer food when the lights are on) and wait a few minutes….

Or a few more…

The sight changes dramatically. (The coral gets even more elaborate at night, when the lights go out, but so far there’s been no opportunity to photograph it in that condition.)

People are like this too. The closed-up outer shell we present the world rarely hints at the quality of the person concealed beneath. It takes time and patience to see what lies within. As I head out to the Historical Novel Society Conference in San Diego, I’ll be keeping that concept in mind – and making an effort to listen quietly in the hope that others will open up. If I can come home with half a dozen new writing allies, I’ll call the weekend more than just a success. If I can come home with a glimpse of their inspiration, I’ll consider it even better.

Take a look at someone – really look this week – and see if you can find something unusual beneath the surface. Jump into the comments and share what you find!