As this winter’s presence lingers, and plays cat and mouse with spring, Wednesday’s high temperature was a hot and sticky 85 degrees. Most heavy coats were off, and, for some, it was time to put their legs on show, albeit by the latest leg warmers and shortest of short pants.
Yesterday, Thursday April 11, 2013, was 45 degrees – not exactly cold, but the sudden drop in temperature made it feel like 10 degrees under zero. Living in New York, a state with seasons, one gets to experience change – an important value in today’s world of uncertainty.
Last Sunday, the 34th street show windows, of Macy’s in Manhattan, had displays of flowers in the form of art. These live flower museums were also natural backgrounds and many parents used them to take pictures of their children and their families.
Additionally, on the street, opposite the window museums, a large parked mobile container housed a free flower show that had very long double lines.
About, ten blocks down – further, along the street – side streets were blocked and the main street became an active street market with farm products that included pearls and roasted corn.
Elsewhere, in open spaces in Brooklyn, for example, another type of change is taking place. Old roofs that were battered by last year’s winter are being replaced while community organisations and block associations are retooling last year’s rectangular boxes of compost and buying seedlings from the neighbourhood stores.
This act of change also prevailed in the wish list of the activities of the Barbadian community organisations as shown:
* Hilltops Association – Appreciation show – Grace Praise dancers and Steel Orchestra – Sat April 13th
* Barbados Ex Police Karaoke – Friday April 19.
* Hilltops Juniors, Bingo and Fun Games Night – Saturday April 27.
* Team Barbados Open House Albany Manor – Saturday April 27.
* National Heroes Service, Church of St. Marks – Sunday April 28.
* Young Barbadian Professional Society, Hats off to Mom Mother’s Day Luncheon – Sunday May 12.
* Foundation Old Scholars Cocktail Sip, St Gabriel’s Church – Sunday May 19.
* Barbados Association of New Jersey, Cocktail Sip – May 26.
* Foundation Old Scholars Memorial Week end trip to Toronto Canada – May 24 – 27.
* National Association of Barbadian Organisations – July 4 weekend Annual Conference in New Jersey.
My enduring spring story is the fact that whenever and wherever flowers appear, butterflies come to dance and to sing. This is perhaps better understood by those with a Caribbean backyard experience. However, we then fall into a trap by expecting a particular outcome.
Then, something happens, surprises us, and we end up feeling happy or sad. I had my surprise this week and it showed itself in an act of human kindness by someone not normally seen during winter and certainly sprung from a loving heart.
This week, I joined the line at the booth to add money to my train pass. While waiting my turn, I felt a hand touch my shoulder, and the person asked: “Is this yours?” Yes indeed it was my credit card, which apparently had fallen to the ground unknown to me, when I was taking out the train card. I was happy and thankful. I was saved from many possibilities.
Truth be told, the person who found the card and brought it to me was the middle aged Spanish gentleman who stands against the wall as one enters the station asking for change.
I have often passed the gentleman on mornings and given a dollar or two, but I was floor when he retold the story of how it happened next day.
“When you reached the steps over there, I heard something drop. I didn’t know what it was. When I went over to check on it I noticed the card on the ground.”
It is quite remarkable that in a noisy station one could hear something drop. Now it is not for me to question what the gentleman saw or heard. I simply feel blessed and I must confess that in the future, it will be extremely difficult for me to pass someone like this gentleman on the street and not give them something.
I am also reminded that the important and the unimportant should be stored separately.
What has been your spring surprise?