As I sit at the kitchen table staring once again at a gray sky and winds whipping leaves around the driveway I am reminded that although the calendar says spring, the thermostat says, well…something else.
Spring is revealing itself daily
Feeling more like Thanksgiving than Passover/Easter, it is nice to see that despite the brisk temperature, spring is revealing itself daily. And today, as we celebrate Earth Day, I relish the fact that I am privileged to be spending it in the country with Irwin, our youngest son and especially with Charlie.
Last Friday Irwin, Charlie and I left the Gallery in the early afternoon and headed for the country. Although it was too cool to drive with the top down, I was just happy that the temperature was above freezing and no precipitation was in the immediate forecast. The first blooms of the season were making their debut and we were anxious to spend some time drinking in the glorious weather.
After dropping our bags and putting away the food, we grabbed a couple of frosty beers and headed out. On the way, as is my ritual, I checked on the nest outside our front door and was beyond thrilled to discover it had a new addition already built and a lovely expectant couple preparing it for the season. This was a good sign.
A new addition on last year's nest
A new addition on last year's nest
We settled into our weathered Adirondack chairs and were transfixed by the cacophony of sights and sounds of the season. I was struck by the seemingly simple yet extraordinary fact that each spring season, like a snowflake, looks the same, but in fact there are no two that are exactly alike.
A perfect place
Heading inside for a refill, I walked by my laptop and wrote:
And at that very second I heard Irwin scream “Charlie, come back here”.
What was just a serene moment of enjoyment and reflection was instantly transformed into one of absolute panic and chaos. As I headed to the porch door, I caught a glimpse of Irwin running across the lawn and reversed directions heading out the mudroom door to the driveway. While in hot pursuit, Irwin screamed that Charlie, our senior dog with disc problems, had taken off after a fox. Charlie was nowhere to be found as Irwin headed past the future location of our garden and into the woods screaming Charlies name.
Thinking that Charlie might be headed for the road, I flew down the driveway, still in my heeled boots screaming his name, hoping that the approaching car did not hit him. But there was no Charlie in sight and at that moment, the all too painful reality struck me like a boulder.
a long way in heels
I continued to scream Charlies name and Irwin’s as well because I could no longer hear him. I ran up the steep grass covered hill thinking that perhaps Irwin, who had been having chronic back issues, might have injured himself while hunting for Charlie. As my breathing quickened I hoped that my ascent would compensate for that morning's missed cardio session while not give me a heart attack. Amazing what runs through your mind at moments like these.
these boots were made for Walking NOT running
When I reached the top of the hill and still could not hear or see either Irwin or Charlie absolute terror set in and I had difficulty catching my breath (which I must say, in retrospect could have been caused by my poor cardio skills) and I felt almost as if I was having an out-of-body experience.
Back in the driveway, I was welcomed with silence and my panic ensued. I continued to yell Irwin & Charlies names in vain while conjuring up painful images in my mind.
Just at that moment I heard Irwin shriek: “You get back here right now” and saw Irwin and Charlie emerge from the woods. What in reality was less than five minutes seemed like painful eons. It was hard to imagine Charlie, who has difficulty jumping on the bed sometimes, taking off at lightening speed, but nevertheless, he did. It was even more difficult to comprehend that he could have been lost or worse.
The lessons learned are plentiful and obvious but still worth repeating. Savor each moment rain or shine. Life is finite and even the best laid plans can change in a flash.
As I sit here typing with Charlie at my side and our guest snuggled in her nest, the sun has made a brief appearance and the Magnolia is on the cusp of blooming. And I am grateful to be able to share this happy ending.
Our guest in her nest
Happy Earth Day, Passover & Easter!