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A Bit of Country in the City

The wind picked up today. I've noticed - living in the city - this means the trash creeps around. Where I grew up in the country, it's only leaves that move about from place to place when the spring breezes begin to blow. Just one more thing to continue getting used to as I enter into my seventh year of living in the Twin Cities.

There are times when I'm overcome by longing for the quiet's times like these when I must needs find a way to bring a little of the country to me - though I might be in the midst of the city.

This early evening, out with Zada, I realized I haven't been up north to relax for quite some time - especially without snow on the ground - and I was missing the solitude and peacefulness of the country. While the sun sank lower in the western sky I plopped on my back - on Wheelock Parkway - with Zada at my side...

Naked tree limbs clack gently together while cirrus clouds scud high overhead. The wind sighs softly through the mostly-bare branches of the trees, as if coaxing the spring buds into full growth. Through my fish-eye lens view I can see the new growth of the nearest tree, golden against the robins-egg blue of the sky.

A pair of geese hails with their nasally honk as they fly overhead; I turn to see which way they've gone but they elude my vision. After they depart, a songbird flies across my heavens. I know not which kind he is, but his happy trilling gives tribute to the dawning season, reason enough for me to remain content in hearing his song.

Even the rapid panting of my German shepherd lying nearby reminds me of lazy country days, when I had nothing more to do than wear myself out in the great outdoors. I breathe in the clean air slowly and revel in the moment - it's as close to religion as one can come these days, and if there's an argument there, then one has never experienced it for herself.

The constant susurration of cars on the parkway reminds me of where I am, but it's enough - right now - to focus on the simpler elements of nature and pretend I'm elsewhere. The slanting rays of the setting sun lengthen, stretching their fingers eastward as if they, too, don't want to see the day end.

I close my eyes and take a deep breath...for now, I've come as close as I will to transporting myself out of the suburbs and back into the country where my life began.