Saturday, March 14, 2015


I woke up the morning and heard Spring. Eyes still closed, I could feel the morning light filling the room. I knew that I had slept deliciously late and I wasn't in any hurry to get out of bed. And then I heard it: Spring.

What does Spring sound like? Was it the bird singing? Was it the sound of morning rain? Maybe. It was something about the air. Something different, which transformed all of the sounds--rain, bird, footsteps, cars going by. Something warmer. A feeling of lightness. I got the feeling that something amazing was getting ready to happen.

That's Spring, alright.

In Columbia in Spring we get outside more. Casual pathway users join the year-round diehards as they explore neighborhood nature and visit the tot lots. People tend to their gardens, pull up the junk, buy mulch, start to plant. Oakland Mills Village has a plant sale every year on Election Day. We anticipate the opening of our Farmers Market. The beautiful color and variety of local produce stays fresh in our memory from last year. I can almost taste it.

Around town I imagine it is much the same. Every village has its own way of emerging from the cocoon of Winter. Down at the Lakefront it will be fun to observe the seasonal changes from the cafe at Whole Foods with its wide-open views. It will get warm enough to have coffee and a pastry outside at Le Comptoir. I'm already looking forward to the lunchtime concert series.

Spring gets us out of our homes and into places where we will see each other: village elections, gardening, pathways, markets, caf├ęs and concerts. Hibernation is over. Our neighbors are around us. The open streets beckon. Will we connect or just coexist?

Spring isn't just pretty and mild. It's muddy and messy and changeable. Just like community-building. It challenges us to do things differently from the way we've been doing them. It demands that we really pay attention.

I heard Spring this morning. It said, "get ready."



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