William A. Gralnick
There are two things I want to tell you about. One is my constant musing of and anger at Putin concerning Ukraine. The other is a family circle reunion I attended last week that brought me both great warmth and joy plus the realization that 3/4 of my grandparents, whose passports say they are Russian, were really Ukrainian before the Russians took it, off and on, over the centuries. Both will have to wait.
I need, and I hope you would welcome something short and sweet. Topic? The first day of Spring. One thing that this area gets in Spring is spring training, which has started now that baseball’s lock out is over and settlement reached. Another thing it gets is the end of Spring Break and tens of thousands of dopey kids going home, some to some serious disciplinary and health issues and, others to pictures that will embarrass them for the rest of their lives. For my money, south Florida gets the best bits of weather during the spring months. Lots of sun, not so much humidity–yet. And that too is welcome. Here’s a secret, book a room for a week or so after the winter rates drop. But what I realized, as I do every spring, what does it for me is the lyrical music coming from the trees.
This morning I walked the dog to a chorus of birds trilling, chirping, and excitedly looking for “stuff” from which a nest will result. It isn’t all trilling and chirping. There are a few woodpeckers who either because they need glasses or are stupid, peck on the metal gutters across the street. It is like listening to a construction crew and their sounds of joy, once they tire of beating their brains out, sound worse than a crow. But I get a kick out of it especially when I see one realize that trees are what he’s supposed to peck and fly off the roof to a nearby trunk of wood and busily start showing his intended how many bugs a woodpecker can peck when a woodpecker is pecking bugs.
There are spots in the neigborhood where I’m in surround sound. It’s like standing in the middle of a symphony that offers an orchestra of trees. I’ve learned to control my curiousity about who the singers are. If I get too close they pack up and fly off in search of trees that have no nosy on-lookers. One morning I’ll remember to take my binoculars with me.
All I can tell you about the experience is that it lifts my soul, gladdens my heart, that you should try it. One morning, walk out of your abode, stop, and just listen. I’ll bet both your blood pressure and heart rate will drop. For the brief time you share in their joy, you will be provided with respite that for almost three years now has been hard to find–at least from my perspective.
No commercials, no laments. Enjoy the moment