Saturday, April 25, 2009

Spring Revisited

A few days ago I posted a jazzy little number regarding the ups and down of springtime; to end this post I offered my salutations to Spring in the form of a Robert Frost poem with the intention of bolstering hope in my own soul. The combination of sunny skies and a supposedly stable forecast strengthened this hope and I was looking forward to consistently warm weather. Well, short story made short—it’s raining. Yes, I opened my blinds this morning only to peer out of a window covered with nature’s teardrops into a grey miasmal morning. Shame. I was going bike riding today…
Alas, upon further reflection of my own attitude I’ve drawn the conclusion my outlook must change and luckily, I have just the experience to inspire a new approach.
Several years ago I spent a month in Zambia, Africa working with the organization Mothers Without Borders, a non-profit dedicated to the service and protection of orphaned children. I took a number of lessons back home with me, however let me relate my very first wakeup call—metaphorically and literally.
Upon arrival to Zambia after some 36 hours of travel time later, we settled into our hostel bunks and fell fast asleep; 5 hours later around 4:00am we all awoke to the rooster living next door. I’m not sure what Zambian’s feed their chickens, but I might bet a small sum steroids was the cause of this particular rooster’s hearty crow. Every morning, usually starting around 3:30, the rooster would follow a consistent schedule of crowing ever 30 minutes. After night number four, in unison we complained to the head lady in charge, Cathy. “We can’t sleep. That stupid rooster keeps waking us up. Isn’t there something we can do?” we all chanted. We proposed an ‘accidental’ chicken killing or some bribe to the rooster’s owner—anything for a restful night’s sleep. We expected sympathy and understanding from Cathy but she only smiled and offered her advice. “Listen,” she said. “That rooster has the right to be next door and to crow every morning and all day should he so desire. Now, you can spend your nights bitter and hateful towards the rooster, or you can accept he lives here too and move on.” Cathy then told us, as strange as it might sound, that if we embraced the rooster his crows would not wake us—if we accepted and loved the rooster, we would sleep peacefully uninterrupted. After her advice, we all went to bed unconvinced; however after further discussion we came to a consensus sending love vibes to the rooster was worth a shot—we had nothing to lose at this point. Surprisingly, the next morning we awoke at 7 and no one heard the rooster during the night. After that night, morning after morning we arose rested and surprised the rooster hadn’t crowed. We still knew the rooster existed—and he still crowed. We heard reports in the morning from other travels complaining of some rooster waking them up early in the morning; we passed on our condolences but secretly smiled on the inside.
I’ve decided to apply this same logic to my frustration at Spring weather. And you know what? It’s worked. I’m not bothered it’s raining. In fact, I’m embracing the rain and enjoying the unique atmosphere it brings.
Maybe Cathy made up her speech of love and acceptance—but I still love that stupid rooster, and I don’t care that it’s raining.

1 comment:

  1. I really like this story, it's real, it's fun and it's inspiring. Have I told you I love reading your writing. Ben said, "Write something worth reading, or do something worth writing about." I think you cover both!