Thursday, December 9, 2010

It's Christmas Time in the City

I just got back to the homestead from visiting my family in the Big City.  It was a particularly enjoyable visit, and for once I wasn't quite ready to come home.  This trip, I was able to appreciate the little pockets of respite in an otherwise dingy, expensive, lonely city life. 

I sat outside my son's apartment, watching him play basketball with his little brother, and admired the palm trees, stretching up above the rooftop of the complex, swaying and rustling in the chilly breeze, waves of green against the blue of the sky.  I took delight in watching the Christmas decorations going up in mom and dad's neighborhood; twinkling lights, inflated, lit-up snowmen, front yard Nativity scenes.  I soaked up some last autumn rays of sunlight on a strategically placed patio nook with southern exposure at my parents' house.  Over the years the old neighborhood has gone from plain and drab to green and well tended, with colorful flower beds, not restricted to the edges of the houses, but creatively scattered throughout front yards.

As much as I basked in the comfort and love of my family, there were those moments when I knew I must eventually return home to my own life, where the background noises come from the chicken coop and the paddocks and a wild indian of a boy, not from constant traffic and electronic buzz.  The early morning aroma is from the barnyard and the juniper trees, and not that peculiar big city odor of mingling garbage and sewage.  And the blankets of stars in the darkness before dawn, outnumber the streetlights ten billion to one.

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