Thursday, April 8, 2004

Sometimes, I just drive.

I may be on my way home, after dropping my daughter off at the daycare, and I will just keep on driving. And driving. And driving. This will go on for an hour. Or two. There is a definite benefit to having interstates nearby that go in all four major directions. And a decent car to drive on all of them. In an hour, I can easily be 60 or 70 miles away. Somewhere that I have never been before.

Yes, even though I have now lived here for almost two years, I am still finding places nearby that I haven't seen before. Lakes, rivers, mountains, villages, people, diners, book shops, churches, train stations.

Speaking of trains. I really like them. If the trains here were not so completely devoid of the otherwise inherent romance of railroad travelling, I would have jumped on one of them for a day-trip into the unknown a long time ago. I guess I'll have to go back to Europe to do something like that.

Anyways. Yesterday morning, I suddenly found myself miles from home. On my way to someplace I did not recognize. Tall, bare trees lined the road. After a looong drive, I finally stopped by the side of the road where this never-ending wall of overgrown toothpicks gave way to a small clearing. I stepped out of the car and into this quiet haven. Despite the silence, it felt as if there was an urgency in the air. As if there was something that needed to be said. I walked along banks of mostly amber yellow, where small sprouts with a malachite and aquamarine hue were starting to appear. Overhead, I heard familiar voices of those blessed with the ability to fly, praising their gift in a song. The whole scene was trying to speak, straining to convey a meaning. A message. A feeling. Just like my little girl does sometimes, when she looks at me sternly and says, exasperated: Gu-JOOOL-ie dOO! And nothing. Not a glimpse of understanding in those big, dumb eyes of her father. How frustrating! Having all this to say, and no way of getting it across.

I took off my jacket, for the first time outside in a long time, and sat down. More sage, viridian, beryl. I felt I could almost hear the words. A brush of wind stroked the tree branches and rustled a few leaves, still lingering from last year. I looked around. Chartreuse, kelly, lime.

Then I finally got it. Green! It's all turning green! Not right away. And only very slowly. But it's coming. Summer is coming! And the sun will become warm like a hearty smile.

Come and let me embrace you, sweet season. I promise to savor every singly day that you can spare.