“ Can words describe the fragrance of the very breath of spring.” – Neltje Blanchan
Mornings here are no longer greeted by the chorus of the blackbird choir, the feathered flock have moved back to the cattail clotted edges of the lagoon to pair up for nesting season. Their voices have been replaced by the haunting sounds of two ravens who have chosen to nest at the edge of the city in the tall trees of the forest. The eagles (there are at least 5 nesting pairs in the park) have returned, startling the gulls sitting on the neighbouring rooftops each time they majestically take to the sky. Spring is making itself known whether lingering winter wants it to or not!
I’ve been making sure to take time to walk the neighbourhood, taking note of all the new growth and I’m amazed at how fast once bare bushes are swelling with new green leaves. Mustard yellow and brick red witch hazel trees are adding a layer of colour catching the eye with the star-like beauty of their flowers. The rhododendron bushes are starting to show off their gorgeous colours eclipsing the delicate pink of their neighbours with deep fuchsia and fire engine red blossoms. Sprinkled throughout are the blossoming cherry and plum trees – their dark branches swathed in pale pink and creamy white.
With winter receding, these walks in nature encourage me to gather up my neglected treasure, to greedily take it all in with every sense blissfully aware. A recent seawall walk revealed treasures such as the warmth of the golden sun on my face, the sight of a lone young man in lotus position sitting on an outcropping of rock lost in the sound of the waves and the first picnics set up between towering trees despite the cool temperatures. This hunt for neglected treasure came from a conversation with a friend, we were talking about how parts of our lives are put aside or away – the longing to light candles more often, the joy of sinking into an afternoon bath or reading for hours with a cup of tea nearby, often our busy lives snuff out these desires and they lie forgotten until we are reminded once again by the fragrance of a new season wafting in our newly opened windows.
Journal Entry: December 31st, 1999 – Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
One dark night, after slipping on my sandals to use the facilities, I think I stepped on a big cockroach! I found it dead near the bed the next morning…aaah, living in Mexico is very different from living in Vancouver, I’ve learned a lot!
We have a very nice spider in our bedroom, he doesn’t bother us and likes it when we leave our shutters open all day. On a neighbour’s roof we noticed an iguana, so even if we are not living near the jungle, we can still see our favourite wild things! These are the treasures that I have collected along the way…