March 12, 2013

Spring Ramblings

Are you the sunshine that walks into someone's day?  I like to think we all are, most of the time. There are plenty of days when I know I am the storm that walks in- like when I talk a lot about issues close to my heart (environmental and animal issues). For the most part though,  I am pleasant. I do believe in people being the limiters of happiness as Hemingway states.  And that is often why I seek nature as much as I do. It is in the forest and under the stars that I find myself feeling most at home and among friends. 

Spring is soon to be here. Dozens of ladybugs will emerge from their crevices inside our home. The returning sounds of "cheerily, cheer up, cheer up, cheerily, cheer up," from the American Robin will bring long-awaited comfort to my ears. Cobwebs, like strings of jewels, will decorate pathways on cool mornings. Frogs will stir in muddy streams and insects will slowly creep from cold soil. I wait impatiently for the forest to fully open the magic that she has stored.

It’s raining, it’s pouring
The old man is snoring
He went to bed and he bumped his head
And couldn’t get up in the morning.
 –children’s nursery rhyme

When we are children, we yearn to play in the rain. As adults, most of us cringe at the thought of getting caught in the rain. Is it because we lose a certain sense of excitement in ourselves as we grow older? Or is it because we will have chores to do, such as muddy laundry when we return?

Not long ago, I went off on a bike ride, alone, with the sun at my back, only to find my return trip home was in a torrential downpour. My husbands words "you'll get caught in the rain" as I was leaving had indeed come true. I’ll admit, as I got soaked from the tires kicking mud up my back, I had never laughed so hard or enjoyed myself so much. And for this reason I purposely took my time going home.

I was quite certain that to most of the passersby that day and to my family when I returned home, that I looked like a mad swamp woman. I didn't care. I allowed myself to accept the situation, hence the rain and I became closer.

I believe that if just once this year, we each let our inner child reappear, and dance in the rain; make a snow angel; create a mud pie; build a sand castle, chase a butterfly, love an animal, we will all be happier, and therefore the “spring" that walks into someone’s life.

I never want to stay indoors in the spring, not to cook, paint, clean, sleep, or do much of anything. It is easy to get lost in the sweetness of nature's new life. And perhaps you can relate when out shopping and you are a sucker for buying seeds - even when you don't need them. I find myself planting various trees to make up for ones that are dying of old age-or so that’s what I tell myself so I don't feel guilty spending so much.  I have Forest Gump days, when I want to simply go off on a run and run and never look back. I get that excited feeling that something across the ways, over the hill tops, is calling me. I have no idea what it is, but I know it's something special-perhaps the ocean. Yet, at the same time, I don’t want to move from this wonderful place I call “our yard”. There’s a true sense of comfort here that no other place in the world can bring.

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