Going backwards into Summer

Going backwards into Summer

Summer is here! I went for a paddle on Laurel Lake in Erving with a neighbor this evening, which was a great way to ring in this vibrant season.

As I started paddling, I found myself veering off in a weird and unexpected direction, unable to control myself.  It took me a few seconds before I realized that I was on my paddle board backwards.  I laughed and said, “Well, that basically sums up the way my day has been.  What a metaphor for life!”  It was funny because it was true. I really did feel like I was going backwards today, and most certainly did NOT feel in control.

I love these little moments of wisdom in life, and it’s especially great when they make you laugh.  Let’s face it.  We all have days like this – heading in an unexpected direction, or feeling fear or frustration when we seem to be going backwards instead of forwards.  Hey, it happens.  But, eventually, we straighten ourselves out and move ahead through the calm, clear waters.

Being out on the lake was so peaceful and serene.  The mountain laurel is in bloom all along the shore line, and it looks like little while and pink candies dotting the dark green foliage.   A loon was swimming at one end of the lake, and watching it dive under the water inspired me to do the same.  The water was so sweet and cool, like liquid velvet gliding across my skin.

I’m excited for summer.  Even if I find myself veering unexpectedly, out of control, or going backwards, I know I can always depend on the gentle magic of nature to set me straight.

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Pink and white candy blooms of mountain laurel

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Yours truly on Laurel Lake

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Summer Solstice

I’m finally relaxing after a long, draining day – and wouldn’t you know?  It’s absolutely beautiful out!  Actually, perfect is the word that comes to mind.  The temperature is just right.  A refreshing breeze dances through the treetops.  The sky is heavenly-blue with just the slightest wisp of white lazily drifting by.  The chipmunks are bolding claiming their territory, seemingly popping out of every nook and cranny.  I’ve just picked a bountiful load of peas and strawberries from the garden.  And flowers are bursting into bloom everywhere.

The mountain laurel alone is something to celebrate.  The hillside is positively glowing with the sweet blossoms like delightful pink-white candies.  I feel like a kid in a candy store just looking at it!

I admit, I am sad to see spring go.  After all, it is my favorite season.  But as we enter this sacred season of exuberance and abundance, I offer my heart in gratitude.  Let this soak in.  Let me savor every moment.

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Mountain laurel blossoms that look sweet enough to eat!

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Garden beauties

Spring: The Most Sensory Season

At last!  Spring is here!  The air is alive with birdsong and the warm glow of the sun. The phoebes are back and are diligently working on their nests, a squirrel is chattering on the branch of an old oak, and a newly emerged chipmunk darts in and out of a stone wall like a beachgoer carefully dipping his toe to test the water. (Come on in!  The water’s fine!)  Everyone seems to be feeling a sense of energy and excitement.

I don’t know if it’s just my imagination, but even the bare branches and dried out remnants of last year’s growth seem cheerful today.  The sweet fern with old leaves like curled up claws, the mountain laurel with the kernels of last year’s blossoms, the wild blueberries with tiny buds less than 3 mm long – they all seem filled with the potential of great things to come.

To me, there is no season that fills the senses as much as spring does.  My soul is thirsty for the sight and fragrance of new growth.  And when I listen to the music of nature’s song, I hear it, not simply with my ears, but with my whole heart.  To quote Aldo Leopold, it is “a vast pulsing harmony – its notes the lives and deaths of plants and animals, its rhythms spanning the seconds and the centuries.”  It is the music of the ages, and of life itself.

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Eastern Phoebe