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It was so beautiful out!
It was so beautiful out!
I didn’t cook today. It was simply too beautiful outside, almost like a summer’s day. Instead of my usual nature walk, I went off to wander the streets of a new residential development in my area. It was such a delight to come across other long-distance walkers, runners dressed in colourful leggings, dogs of all sizes, many pulling their owner behind them at the other end of a leash. I saw an old couple fastened to each other to make walking easier, three teens throwing the last snowballs of the year at each other. I especially loved the children walking in a single file behind their parent, the little ones wobbling along on scooters, the baby tucked in a pretty pouch slung over a father’s shoulders or another snuggled against a young mother’s chest. I thrilled at the veritable concert of birds singing loudly from a bare maple tree as if to catch my attention. Believe it or not, I applauded them. Clap! Clap! Clap! I was also perhaps unconsciously applauding the tenacious and irrepressible life in front of me, defiant gestures in the face of uncertainty.
And as I wandered the streets, drawn along by the repetitive patterns of the home’s almost identical façades, I suddenly had the impression of being in an art gallery. Because everywhere, pictures of rainbows were displayed in the windows. Beautiful, brightly coloured rainbows, each one accompanied by the now famous line “It’s going to be okay” written in attractive letters.
IT’S GOING TO BE OKAY… After the storm comes the sunshine. This realization fell over me like a gentle mercy. The certainty that life post-virus will bring something positive to each one of us. For those toddlers, who will take their first steps, for the teens, who will be off to university or the runners, who will likely enjoy a long and healthy life. And for me, who will learn how to keep a cool head, live better and incorporate the lessons learned from these trying times into my daily life.
In my heart, I have already signed my pact with Solitude (a nod to Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, 1967) and I am happy to honour to it. I love all of life’s different sides, especially the “inexhaustible imagination” that I have still to express before I leave this world. So many words and sentences to seed between the lines so a story can spring to life. Like the roots, branches and buds who wait patiently for the ripe fruit to appear.
The end of our confinement will be the perfect time to invent a better version of our lives. For me, I will continue to keep my distance… from overworking, empty chit-chat, meaningless ties and vain distractions that close us off from our own happiness.
For the few decades I have left remaining, I want to embrace life as it comes. Bending down to smell the flowers, running my hands over the rough bark of trees, writing poems to birds and crying when a cloud erases the sun.
Here’s to staying stoic and creative.
whisper to the ants.