Don’t get me wrong – I love snow. It is one of nature’s greatest gifts. But it belongs in the months of December, January and February. An occasional March flurry isn’t too bad, but I’m looking at a Nor’easter!
It was 70 degrees (20C) last week. Crocuses have emerged from the ground. Periwinkle has covered the bed along our sidewalk with lavender flowers. The Cherry Blossoms are due for their peak bloom next week – the earliest ever recorded.
But tonight we refresh our memories about the OPM and school alert systems. Windows are closed and the heat is on. Hot chocolate is back in style. It’s been a weird week.
This weekend’s NCAA Basketball Tournament will reinforce this confusion by airing commercials for the Master’s golf tournament. Snapshots of Azaleas in glorious bloom will dazzle the senses. Slowly panning images of leafy trees and manicured greens will cause droplets of drool to form at the corners of my mouth. The softly played piano notes gently reassure me, as if to say “Don’t worry, it’s only a few weeks away!”
This week’s photograph has a similar way of gentle reassurance. Grab a cocoa and read on.
Walking through the garden gate I encounter a beautiful view. Mountains extend across the horizon, dotted with small farms and houses. Smaller gardens are arranged in the foreground – a cutting garden, vegetable garden and a water garden splashing joyfully.
A small barn sits casually on the corner of the property, soaking in the gorgeous layout. A large Beech tree provides ample shade and protection from the harsh sun rays. Making my way to the barn, I pause beneath the tree to catch my breath. A wood swing sways gently in the breeze, inviting me to sit down for a while.
To many this doesn’t sound very interesting. And it shouldn’t be. All swings should be carved from a hardwood block, with sturdy ropes connecting it to a strong branch overhead. But they are not, which is why I find this swing so beautiful.
Mass-produced swings are different. Black rubber seats. Steel chains. Metal posts. The swinging motions are the same, but the experience is quite different. I have burned my legs, pinched my fingers, shouted over squeaks and lost shoes in the mud underneath.
I didn’t realize how much those experiences mattered until sitting on this swing. The wood plank is stiff, but warm. The ropes feel smooth in my hands. I silently glide through the air, listening to the birds and the rustling leaves. The view of the mountains ties it all together, relieving every last stress in my body.
The sensations of that swing live on in this photograph. I want to remember them as I build a swing like this for my girls to use. They should feel it too!
Thank you for sharing this experience with me. Please share this with your friends and comment below if you have a similar feel about wooden swings. Please visit my website to see “Wood Swing Waiting” and many other countryside photographs!