There are times in life when we think there are no surprises left, that we can predict each day, the hour-by-hour clock watching. We know we’ll get up, go to work, have time for some exercise if we’re lucky, time to walk the dog and get a breath of fresh air, and time to buy and make dinner, again, we say, if we are lucky. But through it all there is uncertainty. Jobs are terminated. Strange things grow in or on our bodies. We win a small prize on a scratch ticket, find money in an old coat pocket, enough for a premium coffee and a snack.
I have a dear friend who used to take note of words and images as he walked down a city street. If he saw a truck go by that bore the name of a friend on it, he’d say that the universe was sending him a message, perhaps to get in touch with this distant friend or to write them a letter.
In this day to day I described, we are sent messages, sometimes as subtle as a dragon fly alighting on our shin for a moment. This summer my pond became some kind of biological otherworld. I never actually changed all the water and got it completely clean from the winter’s ravages. I added some organic matter to help it along, as well as plants, hoping they would circulate the water. With our rain and heat this summer there was a lot of algae growth which I removed not-regularly-enough. But the plants thrived, and I used a small pump to keep the water moving. Birds and frogs took part with splashes and plunges.
The pond continued being a pond throughout the summer, the water hyacinths multiplied as did other things, and some stuff just disappeared. I have to say the garden has been overwhelming this summer, with ambitious planter boxes, plantings and upkeep, so, you could say I didn’t stop and smell the roses, for all of this activity.
The other day as I was doing some much needed watering I saw these lovely purple flowers growing up from the plants in the pond. I scolded myself for not noticing their arrival. I had no idea that flowers were part of this plant. After the scolding I thought of the wonderful surprises we are presented with, that sometimes go unnoticed and at other times delight us, and remind us that perhaps there is a reason to believe that some good can come our way, sometimes sending a message of beauty or sometimes just being a beautiful messenger.