There are some remarkable things going on in my neighborhood, here in Louisville. It was warm-ish here yesterday and the sun was out, so the Pastry clan headed out for a brief bicycle ride since we still have that freedom of movement. The flowers and flowering trees have been budding and blooming for about ten days now, which for Louisvillians means the pre-Derby festivities are about to begin. Not this year though. It’ll be autumn leaves, not flowering dogwoods, that’ll be decorating Churchill Downs in 2020.
But no one was thinking about that yesterday afternoon. The four of us had barely strapped our helmets on when we heard singing coming out of a house somewhere on the block. It was a young woman singing something that sounded like a pop tune, I couldn’t make it out. Two blocks into the ride, though, I was in more familiar musical terrain. A high schooler I’d never seen before was sitting on his front porch with a tenor sax blowing Charlie Parker riffs. Now THAT’s some spring music, man!
The whole thing mixed together: the afternoon sun, the muddy spring earth smell, the linden blossoms, the uneven tufty lawns, The Bird music (and the birds). I thought: THIS is a little bit of alright! Just about everyone we came across seemed to think so, judging from expressions. Sure, some of the grins were behind surgical masks, but I could tell they were there.
Speaking for this part of the world, expectations seem to be shifting and appreciation for little things seem to be growing. A high school-aged boy we know had a birthday yesterday. His parents have kept him home-bound the last few weeks, which is pretty remarkable given who he is. His birthday wish wasn’t a new phone or a bash with buddies (which is illegal right now anyway). Rather he asked for an hour-long walk in the park with my older daughter. I was utterly charmed before I became seriously alarmed. In what universe would that have happened before this bizarre chain of events?
I can’t wait for corona to be over, but I hope the rest of this can last at least a little while, because I’m liking it.