Sunday was one of those perfect winter days in Perth. Mild in the sunlight with a clear blue sky above. The kind of day that highlights the reality of carpe diem.
So, keeping to my exercise regime, but this day, succumbing to the seduction of a clear day, I took my camera with me when I walked to the lake. Generally, it is a walk down my street and turn right to walk along the rim of the lake. My focus is usually on the birds and in spring, a wary focus on tiger snakes that inhabit the wetlands. I have seen them sunning themselves on the footpath! On Sunday, inexplicably, I decided to turn left and walk towards a path that leads to my former home. My decision drew the curiosity of the Little Corella, who high up in the gum tree, watched with a face perfectly made up in the style of the 1980s!
The walk took me to places long before the time of now, in more ways than one. The gum trees are old and towering. When fallen, they are a garden feature, where they land. I stopped many times to observe my surrounds more closely than I had ever done before. The walk reminded me of a time when I worked in a program that included an Aboriginal consultant. Once a month he/she was expected to give a seminar on indigenous matters to raise cultural awareness. I had forgotten about the spiritual relevance of these areas to indigenous people. It is a vast area that covers several suburbs where the lake flows. It is considered part of the spiritual understanding and has special relevance on the inter-relationships between human, physical and spiritual worlds. Reflecting on this, was a grounding experience.
I walked this path with my children more than twenty years ago. No, not walked, I chased their laughter as they ‘wheeeeeeed’ down the undulating pathway, then huffed and puffed as I pushed them upwards, when tired legs could not longer ride. I learned fast as a single mother with limited funds, any wheeled toy was great fun for the children. Inline skates, two wheeled scooter, skateboard or a bike were favourites at different stages of their development. My children kept me fit with their enjoyment. As complicated life was, it remains a time of treasured memories.
On Sunday, it felt full circle. A sense of oneness with nature, with experiences past and present and feelings. It is still dark today while I reflect on this. In the distance I can hear the laughter of kookaburras. Today, I don’t need to hear them, to make me smile.
Life is good when one learns the art of carpe diem. Yes, the concept may be underpinned by cognitive science, but, I believe, it is an art.
Until next time,
a dawn bird