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Delighting in the tumult

By February 24, 2010How To, Myth or Reality, Writing

I love how you often don’t realize something’s missing until it shows itself. This morning on my run, I heard the most tremendous sound: bird song. I didn’t know I’d been longing for it, so sweet – and full, demanding its rightful place in the woods and in the air.

But it wasn’t the only rare sound that I heard this morning. On my run, I circle around a knob of land that sticks right out into the ocean. The first part, on the west side, is quite open to the elements and the wind and surf are usually pounding me and the sand (respectively) with tenacity and total disregard.

The second part, however, as I come around the bend to the east side, sits in a harbor. It’s protected, in part because the space through which the greater ocean feeds it is relatively narrow. So, typically, no matter how crazy the wind is on the west side, the east side is seemingly always calm and serene.

But not today. Today it was the exact opposite. Somehow – for the first time since I’ve been running this loop – the wind and the waves were blowing at exactly the right angle, allowing them to puncture the inlet and pummel the harbor.

As I ran alongside the eastern shore with the wind threatening to push me over and the new sound of crashing surf in my ears, I thought about the fish and the plants and the whatever else is in this bowl-like slice of water. What it must feel like for them today to be shaken up? I projected that they were upset or alarmed or scared.

And then I noticed something else new. I saw the colors and the light. The sun had already risen for all intents and purposes, but the day was grayer than gray – the skies were soaked in heavy rain clouds. But where the water is usually gray or dark blue, today it was a light green…and vibrant. Like the color ‘sea green’ in the Crayola box. A color I didn’t realize was missing from my eyes until I saw it.

I’m wrong, I thought. This safe little harbor isn’t disturbed by the tumult, it’s all lit up – from the inside.

Join the discussion 8 Comments

  • Van says:

    This is a beautiful post. I love it when you can feel the seasons shifting and there’s electricity in the air. This weekend I saw a gaggle of red breasted robins. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen that bird in Florida. I need to get out more. Perhaps a stroll in the park after work…
    .-= Van´s last blog ..The Murder City Thrift Adventure =-.

  • [Charlene] says:

    What an amazing observation!

    In my graying wisdom (even my hairdresser is asking me when I’m going to start dyeing), I’m starting to really embrace the value of what you are calling tumult.

    I’m delighting in the extremes of weather, the variety of expressions of air, water and earth (we get dust storms in the desert) around me.

    I’m finding joy in the surprising and sideswiping news that reaches me and my business.

    I’m appreciating the moments when I realize that I had been working from a blind spot and I get the chance to see a bigger picture, a fuller landscape, or just more details in a situation.

    Sure, predictability and routine are also nice, but I’m starting to stop dreading their opposites. I’ve stopped bracing for the impact and wanting things to go away.

    I think you are on to something really profound, Julie. Thanks for sharing it.
    .-= [Charlene]´s last blog ..Finding And Using Creative Commons Content =-.

  • Julie Roads says:

    You nailed it, Charlene…that’s what I was thinking exactly. And don’t dye your hair! I say embrace…you earned those gray hairs, dammit!

  • Andi says:

    I always feel this way when Californians say they love their weather. They only have to live somewhere with four wonderful seasons to know that they are missing out. I love when even after seeing something a dozen times you can still find joy in finding a new aspect, it is like a secret present only you know about.
    .-= Andi´s last blog ..Wordless Wednesday #49 =-.

  • Debbie Ferm says:

    Hi Julie. I just found you and I’m so glad I have! I’m a teacher turned writer, also. (Well, I guess I’ve always been a writer, just didn’t call myself that.)

    I love the design of your blog. It sucked me right in:) Also,cool play on words with your name.

    Oh, and I definitely color my hair:)

    Debbie Ferm

  • Alisa Bowman says:

    A great zen moment. I noticed bird song this morning, too. And I stood there trying to figure out if the bird sings every morning and I’m too in my head to hear it, or if it was a sign of spring.
    .-= Alisa Bowman´s last blog ..How to Resolve Power Struggles with Your Inlaws =-.

  • Edgy Mama says:

    I need a moment like that this week. Thanks for sharing yours.
    .-= Edgy Mama´s last blog ..Weekly parent: Guys, put the lid down or sit =-.

  • Julie – I am jealous that you can make such accurate observations in the depths of oxygen deprivation. When I run I must focus on such important things as, “Does my left foot go next? Or was it my right? D’oh!”

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