Saturday, August 08, 2009

Our bookended day

I've spent the entire day away from the laptop, and as the clock
approaches Cinderella's witching hour, I'm not about to crack my
beloved HP out of hibernation. The BlackBerry will have to do for now.

But I couldn't let the day close out without committing to words a
neat bit of serendipity that struck me as worth remembering.

Bookend #1: it's just after sunrise, around 6:20 in our neck of the
woods. We're off on another grand family adventure, and we find
ourselves piloting the wondervan through the nearly deserted streets
of London. As I turn east on Oxford - one of our burg's main east-west
roads - I notice a bright slash of light straight ahead.

Some context: the road is as straight as a ruler - a tie-in to this
week's Thematic Photographic theme, perhaps - so I can see for miles.
It's also hilly, which really helps the see-for-miles thing.

So as I'm driving, I'm wondering what that orange-ish/reddish light
is. New Tim Horton's? Nah, wrong shade. New Shell gas station? Wrong
color. Then the shape evolves a bit, and it dawns on my sleep-addled
brain that I'm staring directly into the rising sun. The lower horizon
is sorta overcast, so the slash of light is actually a tiny break in
the crowds. Coolness!

I call out my discovery. The dog yawns. Noah looks up and chatters as
only a freshly minted 9-year-old boy can. His Nintendo DSi will
wait...he knows a far more magical show is going on through the
windshield, at the end of the road. And this one he gets to share.

Bookend #2: it's just before sunset. I'm sitting on the porch with
Zach, our eldest son. I have my camera with me, and we're patiently
watching the cloud-covered horizon shift the fading slashes of light
toward nighttime blue. We figure the clouds won't clear before Old Sol
slips below the horizon for good, but we figure some patience won't
hurt. We chat about what this scene looked like last night -
brilliant, in his estimate - and how we really ought to camp out here
every night to ensure we get what we're looking for.

I watch him as he peers into the endless sky, and it hits me that for
all his annoying-big-brother shtick, the building blocks of a much
more adultlike being are very much on their way to being fully formed.
Bit by bit, he's learning the lessons he'll need to not only take
better pictures in his own unique style, but to also view his world
more critically and thoroughly as he grows into the man he's destined
to be. Tonight, it's just a sky, two chaIrs and some happy midsummer
dad-son banter. More broadly, I suspect the porch chat is just the
beginning, and I can't help but get the feeling that it's something
he'll be learning about - and from - for a while.

Your turn: Small moments that aren't always so small. Please discuss.

2 comments:

colleen said...

The same. I love to watch the sky and the sun and moon. It's usually those things that go the deepest in my day if I can remember to be present to them. Also conversations and connecting with loved ones in spontaneous ways completely feeds me.

When I started to wake up early to babysit my baby grandson once a week, I looked out the window and thought my neighbor's barn was on fire. It was the sun!

Protege said...

There is nothing more beautiful than natural paintings of sunrises, sunsets, the full moon or a night full of stars in the country side. The best moments for me are always those spend looking out of my windows and seeing nature being the greatest artist of all.
This was a beautifully poetic post.