“ Like some winter animal the moon licks the salt of your hand, yet still your hair foams violet as a lilac tree, from which a small wood-owl calls.” – Johannes Bobrowski
I want my words to conjure spring instead of this rare winter whose cool countenance blankets our usual lush green landscape. There are icicles on the balcony railing and a small drift of snow holds the tiny prints of the juncos who have come to forage. Nearby, a large tree outside my window fills with the sound of excited blackbirds who have taken to roosting there during the daylight hours, sometimes 80 at a time! The falling snow does not seem to bother them and when I look outside again into the snow globe swirl, I can still see their dark shapes.
The weather soon brings some respite, freezing rain arrives and I find my world more navigable – I can walk long distances again without worry of black ice catching me by surprise. The sidewalks are clear though there is still some snow clinging to the branches of trees I pass as well as covering the once grassy boulevards. Out of nowhere, it seems, fat robins have appeared, taking full advantage of the lull between winter and spring. Their high-spirited antics lighten my heart, reminding me that the dark edges of winter are fading fast.
It’s time to shake off this grief and worry – to find the girl who walked the country roads of Germany with a gaggle of local kids from the village we lived in, to go swimming at the big city pool, cooling off on a hot summer’s day and feeling like a mermaid with her long hair floating in the turquoise water. Tonight there will be a lunar eclipse heralding a sense of celebration and new beginnings, perhaps we can harness the winds of change that have been let loose upon the world and reminiscent of that girl of long ago, float upon calmer waters, forever boundless.
Journal Entry: February 12, 2000 – Vancouver, B.C.
We left Mexico on Feb.06th and I’m still recalling the great dinner we had at Roberto’s on Basillio Badillo and the sad part that came after, at Viva Cafe – saying goodbye to Sonny (the charismatic owner of the cafe) and his family. During the day, we had a good visit at the cafe with him, his wife and lovely daughter. It was a beautiful day, the sun was shining and there was a perfect breeze, it reminded me of a warm spring wind. We played and laughed, it almost felt like we weren’t going away. But we were and here we are, back in Vancouver! It’s been a rough week for us, Terry & I miss seeing signs written in Spanish, even our Canadian money doesn’t look familiar – we want the colours, scents and heat of Puerto Vallarta. I especially miss the energy and faces of my neighbourhood. It’s sunny and warm out today, this helps a lot! Since we’ve come back, we’ve had some dark and rainy days, making us want to jump on a plane to fly back home. But when the sun shines here in Vancouver, I find I’m beginning to feel that I’m back in my former home – a northern home that is also very beautiful.