In general, I consider myself to be a fairly good driver. I don’t speed. I’m aware of others on the road. I never block intersections. I switch lanes when I’m in the way. I always let people in. I never honk unless it’s to say hello.
But on days like today, the first day of spring, I have to constantly move my eyes away from distractions. The trees seem to have burst into pink overnight. They make me think of playing cards painting the roses red. They are that perfect and magical. Over and over they try to pull me into their trap of attention as I drive by. Over and over I have to tear myself away from their soft, tangled beauty.
All spring – and all your life, if you are willing – the earth will call to you in colors and music and words. It will be full of wonder and it will be wonderful. It will pull you away from your daily routines, your struggles and your worries, and remind you that there is time again for change. It will offer you a gift that is nameless, but is something close to understanding. It will show you that there is no such thing as ordinary. There is only this. There is only the way the seasons come and go, over and over, forever.
The first day of spring means free water ice at Rita’s, and who am I turn down such sweetness? So I went and stood in line.
I watched as two geese flew overhead, mirror images of one another, proof that no one should have to go through this life alone. I was the only one to look up, to follow them across the sky until they drifted out of sight, into the unknown. No one else noticed them. No one else watched the depths of understanding that rose and fell in the perfect unison of their four flapping wings. No one else felt this love but me.
I thought of the many different ways there are to approach this world, how we can be in the same place at the same time and have completely different experiences. I thought of the way our minds are made of the same matter, but can somehow work so dissimilarly. I thought of flowers, and the way they grow from the same soil, but somehow become so singular, each with its own unique scents and secrets pooled within the core of its blossom. I thought of the way we are all both ordinary and extraordinary, all at once, all the time.
And as I drove away with my mango water ice, already melting in the warmth of spring, I had to remind myself to focus on the road, the task at hand, because all around me grew ideas that called to me. All around me the world opened to golden, shining light. All around me the pink trees sang of love.
Tonight, the scent of barbeque wafts through my open windows. I rub my naked toes against each other. Spring is unfolding. I accept her gifts as they come.
I watch the night descend on the pink petals of the trees, these wild and wise ornaments of the earth. I listen to the life outside my house, the people running and jumping and yelling through the streets, leading lives both so similar and so different from my own. I hear the earth call to me its simple, silly joy. It is ordinary and extraordinary. It is spring, over and over, forever.