I’d be lying if I said staying at home for the past two months has been a hardship for me. I love being at home. It’s peaceful most of the time, except when something malfunctions or the outside world intrudes. When everything’s working properly and nobody bothers me, it’s heavenly.
Also, the weather has not been conducive to outdoor activities. It’s been lousy. I mean, truly, indisputably crummy. Last week—the second week of May—part of my state had snow, and much of the state had frost and freeze warnings. Before that, most of March and April consisted of cold, rainy days. Occasional mild, clear weather was viewed as a treat. Weather forecasters routinely use the phrase “temperatures well below normal for this time of year,” and “well below” often meant twenty degrees below.
But it couldn’t last. Not to say something else may not take its place—Friday night brought threats of severe wind and even tornados in addition to torrential rain—but in spite of winter’s best efforts to hang on, spring has arrived. Yesterday, I mowed my lawn, set out a few potted plants to begin hardening off before they’re put into the ground, and ate dinner on the porch. Today as I enjoyed a (very) late breakfast on the porch, I heard the buzz of lawn mowers and weed whackers, evidence that my neighbors were hard at their yard work. A gentle breeze barely stirred the treetops. Squirrels darted across the back yard. A very noisy cardinal returned to my Japanese andromeda, his peculiar favorite spot this year, and the cats peered through the screen as he called for his mate.
Eventually, I decided to take a stroll around the neighborhood. I assembled my equipment—key, water, phone, mask—and set out.
As I walked, I noted the blooms, the greenery, the wildness, the precision, the whimsy–all incontrovertible evidence that nature and the human spirit survive even the strangest of times. Here are some of the sights from my trek around the neighborhood–including a couple from my own yard. I hope that you will enjoy them and maybe even find them encouraging as we continue to move through the strangeness that is now.