“Autumn arrives in early morning, but spring at the close of a winter day.” – Elizabeth Bowen
Mid-January is just around the corner and there are still sparkling lights to catch my eye as well as a magical lone sapling hung with pastel ice cream coloured balls tinkling against each other in the wind. A gilt edged holiday card lies abandoned on sodden grass conjuring happy moments just past – I recently received a greeting card decorated with three cheerful snowmen along with a letter filled with wise and beautiful words, it stands on top of a shelf in a corner of the living room bereft of festive colour adding a bright splash of winter whimsy.
My thoughts travel back in time remembering our flight home from Ontario two years ago after a whirlwind holiday to London, England just before lockdown. Traveling is on hold for now as we navigate through darker days overshadowed by the latest COVID-19 variant, so we continue to support local businesses, seek delight and count our blessings.
One recent delight unfolded in unexpected lingering sunshine, spring-like temperatures and a desire to spend more time outside. With just an hour until sunset, it was a joy to dress lighter (no scarf or gloves) and head out for a long walk on paths clear of ice and snow. Vancouver’s famous early spring weather is nearly upon us – snowdrops are in full bloom across from the Rose Garden in the park, the Christmas roses (hellebore) are out in delicate shades of sage and pale pink and small bouquets of daffodils are in bud waiting for a sunnier day to open.
This week atmospheric fog and mist has made an appearance adding a haunting note to walks by the sea and at the edge of the park. As darkness descends and the tea kettle gets plugged in, I turn on the string lights wound around a beloved Dickens book that belonged to my father, winding as well among art objects from our travels and a happy spider plant sitting on the same shelf that shares that whimsical card. A favourite Mikasa vase in graduated shades of purple holds dried blood red and pale pink roses with two branches of red winterberries – a single flameless pillar candle sits nearby waiting to chase away any lingering shadows. It’s lovely to sip on a fragrant winter tea and take it all in…
A series of foggy and unusually cold days have given way to a great golden light as the sun breaks through the clouds telling tales of spring. The bench I sat on in autumn is empty and I find myself enjoying a minute or two with the warm sun upon my face, The asphalt path behind me hosts a bevy of walkers and the ocean waves in front soothe my soul as they gently greet the rocky shore. Boisterous chickadees and raucous crows fill the air with sound and bare trees stand like sentinels waiting for warmer air and light before their leaves sally forth – it’s days like this that make the wait for spring worthwhile!
Daffodils are rising and so is my spirit having just realized that I can only embrace the now, enjoy everything and let how I wish the world to be, go…