Walking in the woods isn’t quite the same as it was last week.
It’s hard to tromp about today and only marvel at the beauty and stillness and fresh earthy smells.
The early flowers and birdsong. Tra la, tra la.
I heard a story on the radio this morning about a woman from Fort McMurray who lost her wedding dress in the fire.
I thought how trite. A dress? Why is this a story?
I made my breakfast as I listened. Eggs, toast, tea.
The woman explained how friends had posted about the dress and people from all across the country offered her a replacement. How she chose one from Toronto, where she’s getting married tomorrow on the island.
There was nothing trite about her tone. She was a woman who’d left her home at a moment’s notice with cats and dog and rabbit and who somehow made her way to Toronto where she was now on the radio, stunned at the turn of events.
And all she wants is what anyone would want… for things to be normal.
And that, I thought, is where the dress comes in.
Because our normals may be different things and we may not immediately recognize each other’s version, but I suspect the dress is hers and how brilliant that, in the face of everything else that is such madness, she’ll be able to get married in something that makes her feel that maybe not all is lost.
Even though she said she could just as easily wear a tee shirt and jeans.
And so my walking is different these days because of how I’m thinking about those forests over there and these here, the same, yet not, and I’m thinking about nature, generally, how we’re nothing against it, and the nature of people too, the kindness of strangers and the need for anchors in our lives and how they’re so often what we least expect or even imagine.
And I’m thinking about the woman and the thousands like her…
…here, and there. So many ‘theres’.
Happy wedding on Toronto’s Centre Island, stranger from Fort McMurray…
We’ll be raising a glass to you.
Donations made through the Red Cross are being matched dollar for dollar by the Federal Gov’t.