Thursday, May 13, 2010

Spring in Virginia

The sun is blazing through the sky today. Spring in Virginia doesn’t creep slowly, quietly changing the landscape. It’s more of a full scale riot. The trees have suddenly transformed from that pale fresh color, like the underbelly of a frog, to a deeper green and the flowers are exploding out of the ground.

I missed a month of the spring because I was quite sick. When I started to come back to the land of the living, I noticed how bright everything was. Almost like a mirage, the hazy pollen streaked sky, the impossibly red azaleas and the birds. Several are nesting in the small piece of woods behind our townhouse and they’ve been very happy about it, singing like mad and pulling bits of moss from the side of the house. By six in the morning there is a chorus that lasts until the sun has set and the last hint of pink has faded and the bats have started to take their place, ducking and diving for insects.

I felt as if I’d come back from the dead in a way. I started to notice these little miracles around me and felt grateful that I had the opportunity to witness it all for another day.

I noticed the blue of the sky especially. Washed clean, the color of a robin’s egg, yet it hasn’t rained in days. There were no clouds and I think that if there was such a thing as a heaven, it would be that color.

Saturday the wind blew in an odd little cold front. It went from almost ninety degrees to seventy in a matter of hours. Rog was away on a hike with a friend so I decided to walk around the lake near our house. The water was choppy and brown and I saw a family of geese with little mustard colored goslings. The parents hissed at me and the babies tumbled across the lawn and slid into the water. I was wearing my explorer’s hat that I’d worn in Africa and I pulled the drawstring close to keep the wind from tearing it off my head and sending into the lake. I watched the trees sway; they cast peculiar shadows on the lawn. They made a sound like sighing and then later when the wind picked up, like roaring. It had the effect of blowing the thoughts out of my head as well which was very welcome.

I spent almost two hours studying the water, the wind and the sky, the remaining clouds scudding farther away until they were out of sight. I saw Mallard ducks preening, quacking and fussing on a little rock near the shore. As I walked around the lake I reached a wooded area that was filled with wild roses, their tangled blossoms wrapped around the base of a tree. The cloying scent filled the woods and the wind whipped the blossoms, scattering petals like rain. I was showered and walked on until the path ended.