Dear reader, I recently returned from a trail run and mentioned to a friend that certain places along the way smelled like home.
His reply: Vernon or Las Vegas?
My heart flinched, probably because this thought has been on my mind lately, as it always is during the change of seasons.
When one grows up amongst such beautiful, distinct seasons as I did, they become some kind of inner clock, some compass with which to navigate the passage of time. I think they become imbedded on a cellular level. As a child, I was so acutely attuned to my environment that it seemed I could sense the change of seasons with each passing day.
Change. Every day was filled with its evidence; indeed, in my little valley it seemed the entire spectrum of seasons could breeze and rumble across the sky in a single afternoon.
At this time of year my mum would wander down our driveway, cutting branches of pussy willows and blossoms. She arranged them in an earthenware vase and stood back with a smile--a heralding of life, a promise of things to come.
Today I find myself in the desert where, to the untrained eye, the scenery looks very much alike from one month to the next. The same is true, to some extent, for even the trained eye.
There are no lush, verdant signs of life. There is no runoff, nothing to melt, trickle, and roar, no soft green shoots poking through crusty layers of snow. There is only dirt, drought, and these tough, scrubby bushes--beautiful in their starkness and resilience.
I guess there is something to be said for that: to live where it isn't easy to live. To make one's place where it is strange, barren, and dry. Perhaps the result isn't as mesmerizing as an exotic, tropical bloom.
But it is still beauty, plain and true.
To be clear: to know the desert is to love the desert, and I love the desert.
It's just that I also feel an ache and disorientation during certain times of the year when my inner clock feels the hum of change but I can't as easily put my finger on the evidence.
Either way, it is spring. It is Easter. Whether we see it or not, there is beauty and change everywhere. There is hope. There is life.
And everyone is meant to enjoy it. xo