These are the thoughts of a Texas transplant in West Michigan who makes his living as a newspaper reporter by evening, and a struggling novelist by day.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

emergence #2

i know it's not done yet, winter will return for one last hurarh some time in the near future and temperatures will drop, more snow will come.

and yet today is beautiful. it's one of the joys of living here. you get a wonderful march day like today and it makes you happy, the world is alive around you.

i opened up the windows (the second time in a week and only after many months of them being shut. the breeze, a little strong, blows in, the curtains billowing.

outside, the sounds of cars moving back and forth come through the open windows. my neighbor's wind chimes (out the entire winter) now seem to have a purpose, their sounds not to haunting and indicating cold winds, now meaning only cool breezes blowing.

the snow receded to simple mounds through yards and driveways. the once huge mounds guarding our driveway entrance are now reduced to nothing more than thin wafers 0f white surrounded by emerging grass.

i set out for the library to return some items. for the first time, i put tennis shoes on. i think early december, after that big snow, was the last time i worn them. today, though, it seemed like the perfect day, with no wet sidewalks to hinder my progress.

off i went, trying to experience renewed sounds and smells as i went along my merry way. the obvious smell of car exhaust made its way to me. even though i smell it in the winter, it's a different smell now. not any better, though. the scents of cooking food coming wafting through open windows. yum. open car windows lets me know smokers are driving through the streets.

once covered shrubs and small trees now make their appearance, having survived the freezing temperatures, winds and snow.

you can see white arms and legs, too. people start wo wear shorter clothing and the winter white skin is out for a quick tanning. not much today, though.

to me, sounds are what's alive again. unless you've lived in snow for some time (and my time is limited), you realize just how much it muffles sound. mounds of snow and any object covered with snow prevents sound from traveling too far. snow acts as a shield, sort of. you don't really notice it and as winter wears on, you forget aboug sounds.

then you get a day like today, after most of the snow is gone and you realize the sounds are there. they come flooding back. it's like auditory overkill. but i love it.

in time the familiar sounds of laughing kids, lawnmowers running, boats rumbling on the lake, BBQ cooking outside, music blaring from stereos and birds chirping and crickets doing whatever sound they make will once again add their layer to the sound machine.

i'm waiting.


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