“Behold, my friends, the spring is come; the earth has gladly received the embraces of the sun, and we shall soon see the results of their love!” — Sitting Bull
First we welcomed Zachary to the family. What more can one ask for? It is amazing how the littlest feet can make the biggest footprints in our hearts.
As I learned to cope with running outdoors during winter here in Birmingham, I realized that the joy was in the act of running and in the journey, not in the destination. So I have been running all over this city; if I ever get a car, I think I will not get lost, as I know every part of Birmingham by now. Running has become the road to self-awareness. Being able to rely on myself and see how far I can push myself is pretty amazing.
I cannot imagine a time when I won’t be able to be outdoors and run. Encouraged by my colleague Tanya, I did sign up for the Birmingham Mercedes Half. I loved it! The race was fun and the post-race activities so much better than any RunDisney event.
Winter in Birmingham was very different from anything I ever experienced in 25 years in New York. An inch of snow is likely to shut down the city, and Birmingham’s kids had a lot of “snow days,” even though I never saw more than an inch or two.
It was wonderful to welcome friends to the city. Heidi Hoover and I had a blast at the Ringo Starr concert. Who would have thought that Ringo and his All Star Band would play in Birmingham? At age 74 he was still going strong and his drumming simply fabulous. With only two Beatles left on this planet, we felt blessed to just be there. Stan and Sandra Phillips-Posner, the authors of “Drive I-95” made Birmingham a stop and so did Dan Benjoseph with his lovely daughter Marija.
In early March, I was fortunate to have a few days at Juniper Springs, Florida. It was so good to be back at this peaceful place. Juniper Springs is as close to nature as I probably ever get, and I cannot convey how healing nature’s powers are. It was “what the doctor prescribed” for my winter blues. And while the bugs ate me alive, I can’t wait to go back.
Next came the annual research trip to Walt Disney World with two events for Unofficial Guide authors at the Osceola Library in Celebration and miles of walking in the theme parks.
I am grateful for my new job, my home on Highland Avenue, and the kindness extended to me here in Birmingham, but, after nearly a year here in Alabama, I also know that my heart is still set on one day being able to live in Florida. It does not have to be Orlando. I am not a fool. I know that there is a big difference between Disney and a real life, but I also know that every time I land and see a palm tree, I feel at home.
In the meantime, I am celebrating spring here in Birmingham. I am amazed to see the flowers blossom so early. The amount of pollen blanketing everything here is quite something, so thank God I am not allergic.
In another week the popular Pepper Street Farmer’s Market will open again, and I will be there with bright eyes and a bushy tail.
Spring is all about renewal, the mystery and the creative power of nature, and the music of Igor Stravingsky (The Rite of Spring) comes to my mind. Spring is love, spring is hope, spring is happiness.