Grateful for simple things, on a Sunday morning.
I have always dreamed about this. Since living in the communist flats for years, back home, crammed, and airless, sharing in smells of stopped up toilets, burst pipes, stray cat urine and moldy walls from the 100 close neighbors, my whole family dreamed of a time when we can sit outside, and have our coffee in the morning, in the fresh air, and just listen to the breeze, the birds and the city noises, and just recharge, and cleanse our souls.
I remember my parents visiting their friends who owned houses and backyards, and no matter how cold or rainy it was outside, they always wanted to sit on the patio, in the back, to have dinner. We all craved air. Wide, open, fresh, air. We wanted to feel the breeze and see the sky! We hated walls!
My parents own a huge house with a beautiful yard now, and unless it’s pouring outside, they spend about 90% of their home time in their yard and on their patio in the warm seasons. The craving for air never stopped with them. And they’ve worked all their lives to own a yard, more than to own a house, really!
I am saying this with torn happiness and melancholy in my heart, as I am sitting on my very own patio, in the shade, looking at my tomatoes, dill and roses, and sipping my coffee this morning. I hear birds, cicadas, lawn mowers, an occasional car, and planes …
I have privacy, fresh air, and an open space to call my own. It’s a dream come true, in home ownership! I am so fortunate: mom and dad waited till they were in their late 40’s to own a yard. I have had mine, in various incarnations, since I was in my mid 20’s!
And as much as I enjoy working in my yard, and seeing things grow, and eating a fresh fruit or two, that’s never been the reason why I wanted to have a yard! The reason was a yearning for freedom, mostly: to own a place where I can be outside, and listen to nature, and feel peaceful and simply content. A place close to home, where I can be part of something bigger than me, where I can just escape, and slow down, and take in the events of a week, and give myself a pep talk that life is not all that sour after all, where there are blue skies, and hours to kill, and cardinals perched on pickets, and cool, fresh, crisp smells of clean air. A place where time stands still and there is no rushing towards the next chore. A place where nature floods in. A place with no walls.
Life’s good, I tell you! I only wish mom and dad would be here to share this with me. I know, though, that no matter what physicality we’re in, we’re together in our hearts. After all, they have planted the dream of my own back yard deeply into my heart. It’s because of them that I love and understand this simple peace. And when I enjoy this, they’re with me. Forever.