Renewed in winter


Sometimes, in winter, I feel renewed like in spring. It mostly comes at night, when I step outside into the cold to get relief from the heater. The moon is laying on her back within some stratus clouds, and the glow from my neighbor’s hot house lights up a bit of the night sky. If I remember to wrap my old green velvet blanket around me and wear shoes, I can be outside in my jammies for some time, like Linus waiting for the Great Pumpkin. Linus [writing to GP]: “Everyone tells me you are a fake, but I believe in you. P.S.: If you really are a fake, don’t tell me. I don’t wanna know.”

I look up at the stars and vow to learn some of their names. Ah…there’s the Big Dipper, I at least know that one. I know that my name is now a moon of Uranus. So not romantic, but funny.

This is the time of waiting, where the tips of narcissus have just appeared above the soil, under an unnamed tree in our side yard. The lilac tree will take a bit longer to bloom, and it’s children won’t be around for long. As goes the camellia, pink perfection not long in its season.

I planted a few lovelies last spring. The forget-me-nots that were truly forgotten will now make a showing in a month or two. A bougainvillea that I hope takes over the back fence, and salvia for the hummingbirds. I often see hummingbirds hovering around the bright leaves of some of my non-blossoming trees and plants. I think when the light hits a leaf just right the hummingbirds are tricked into thinking it’s sustenance for their long journey.

Just down the street from my house is the city park. My favorite thing to do is to visit the park on my walk after a day of family picnics, which are few and far between now because of the rain. I love watching the enormous ravens picking through the trash, looking for fries or leftover burritos. I can get pretty close to them before they chortle at me and lift off (I say lift as they are not fairy-light). But since the families have moved indoors they are left to pick through the neighbors’ trash, and this I find hysterical and delightful. Mostly because I find over-consumption and trash abhorrent, especially the overflowing kind. Good for those ravens for making due and surviving in their ever-shrinking greenbelt.

These things I observe fill me with optimism for the coming year. And as Charles Schulz once wrote “Don’t worry about the world coming to an end today. It’s already tomorrow in Australia.”

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