Spring arrived here three and a half weeks ago. Not that there’s been much evidence of it. Occasional snowdrop sightings. And most of the snow has melted, though not all of it. The ice comes and goes from the lake. We are waiting for nicer weather. As I write this, we are in the middle of an ice storm.
This will be our first Spring in the new apartment. It has a balcony with a view of the lake and the downtown and all the surrounding gardens. And I am so, so eager to get out there and bring our table and chairs and drink my morning tea there in the early morning light and enjoy our dinners in the setting sun.
So eager, in fact, that as I stand there with the table (mostly) metaphorically in my hands waiting for the forecast to improve, I ignore the fact that the view from a few feet back is very nearly as good as it will be from the balcony. That our winter view allows a broader sweep of the lake and the downtown skyline than will be there when the leaves grow on the trees. That getting up to grab a forgotten fork or clear the table at the end of the meal is easier than it will be when I need to navigate the foot-stabbing sill of the patio door. That we can play the music through dinner without worrying that we’re disturbing our neighbours.
Soon it will be Spring and I will need to find Summer homes for the plants that have been resting on the table through the Winter. The trees will fill with buds and then leaf out. It will get warmer.
And before you know it, it will be hot. And the Summer markets will be in full swing and our lazy Winter weekends will be what I find myself looking forward to the way I’m looking forward to Spring right now.
I’ve never been good at waiting. Patience is not my virtue.
But I think there I times when waiting patiently is the wrong thing to do. At this time of roller-coaster temperatures and dire weather forecasts (expect power outtages, they’re telling us, and stay off the roads) the thing to do is not to wait, but to enjoy. Enjoy the fact that I can set the table for dinner without needing to turn on any lights, though we still need them by the time the meal is actually served, and light the candles, which makes it cozy and romantic. Enjoy the fact that most days, we can head outside without needing boots, which makes the hat/mitts/scarf/coat dance a step less onerous. Enjoy the fact that, because our dining room is the biggest room in the house we can invite big crowds for dinner parties. And at this time of year, between the time of Winter escapes and Summer busyness, friends are at their most available.
I think if I could get better at not patiently waiting, I could reclaim so much more of my life.
In the moments before dinner is ready, there’s a spot at our kitchen island to sit and have a drink and enjoy a chat with Alan as we take turns chopping and cooking and stirring. It’s a highlight of our day, as enjoyable as the meal itself. Not patiently waiting. Enjoying the moment.
We want to replace some of the light fixtures in the apartment. The ones that are there are ugly and not entirely up to the task. In the meantime, there’s a little blob of paint on the ceiling fixture in the entryway. The superintendent’s hand slipped while he was painting the ceiling and he didn’t notice. Every time I see it, I have a moment of affection for this very patient man who gets called on to retrieve keys from down the elevator shaft, who will gladly put up shelving if you ask him, who is so shy and so diligent. The light fixture itself is ugly as hell. That little blob of paint makes me want to keep it, at least for a little while.