Hello my dear blog readers. As we start to thaw from our winter’s gloom here in the Berkshire Mountains of Massachusetts, I thought I would wish the winter farewell with one of my favorite explorations of the last few months.
There were a few days that ice formed a frozen palace over everything like inside of Yuri’s house in the film Dr. Zhivago.
After chipping the quarter inch deep ice covering off of my car I drove to a rail trail and walked through glistening, glittering trees with plants bent over forming natural ice sculptures on the ground. When the sun shined through everything sparkled.
Where I grew up there was a shop near our home filled with tiny glass sculptures. A man would sit at his fire torch with goggles on his face and create beautiful, miniature, spun-glass animals, intricate castles, sailing ships and merry-go-rounds. That shop was a wonderland for me and I watched him work as long as possible before being pulled away toward the car and home. This day the trees are glittering like that shop even though it doesn’t come through in a photo—kinda like fireflies. They don’t show up either. Magical to the eye but elusive to the camera. I feel again that little girl’s awe in the glass shop, mesmerized by clear, shimmering winsomeness.
Beautiful and unusual in its impermanence, ice is my reminder to live without regrets because tomorrow it may all be gone. If the pandemic didn’t teach me that, here is another opportunity to brush up my mindfulness.
It is treacherous walking but I wear my yaktrax over snow boots and stay upright. I look forward to being able to walk outside without looking down so often. I normally enjoy craning my neck up, left and right keeping an eye peeled for new delights but frosty hiking keeps my view down at my feet. I took a few sliding trips to the ground this winter when I got careless or enamored of the view, gratefully without mishap.
But as cold and slippery as it has been on the trails and as tempting as the mug of tea and blanket on the couch, I have never, and I mean NEVER, been sorry to get out the door and to the wild.
“This invitation to friendship with nature does of course entail a willingness to be alone out there…Indeed the beauty of nature is often the wisest balm for it gently relieves and releases the caged mind.” -John O’Donohue
Caged, such a good word to describe the two year pandemic and this dark winter. I have been getting glimpses of spring with last weekend’s time change and a few days of 50 degree weather. I am longing to flutter my wings out of the cage and get back to some free flying. I hope wherever you are in the world you are finding the cage door opening too.