Eleven days into lockdown. The silence was becoming oppressive, even for an ambivert such as I. Even the characters in my novel no longer spoke to me.
So I took a break from my at-home work, dared to drive my car to the local Dairy Queen for a Mini-Blizzard.
Then away from the no-longer-heavily-trafficked highway to a quiet park in the suburb.
It was an exceptionally beautiful day without the usual Kansas wind. A robin sang his spring song, probably jubilant because he wasn’t worried about Covid-19.
Somewhere down another street, a child laughed in his back yard, safe and away from germs.
I finished the Blizzard — triple chocolate brownie, in case you wondered — threw away the cup and locked my car. Then headed into the park for a walk.
Exercise is nothing new to me. As a former athlete, I walk almost every day. But this walk was in a different location than the usual stroll in my neighborhood. It felt fresh, unencumbered by any reminders of the pandemic that was changing our lives.
First I walked around the baseball diamond, remembered my years as a shortstop, pacing between bases. What fun it was all those years ago, especially the spring day when I hit a grand slam home run.
How quickly life passes — a mere breath, scripture reminds us.
As I took another lap, a group of young men pulled into the kiddie area. They looked to be in their twenties, maybe thirties — obviously taking a break from work at home or recently unemployed.
Unconcerned about social distancing, they played on the equipment. Swung from the monkey bars, slid down the slide, joked with each other as carefree spirits.
I smiled at their antics, glad they could be out in the fresh air, that none of us were confined in an ICU, struggling to breathe.
After a while, I left the park to return to my work with words. The guys remained at the playground.
I promised myself to return more often to that park, to renew my hope as I marched around the ball diamond. Maybe even to slide or swing in the kiddie area.
Hope uncovers itself in the simplest places and reminds us not only of a sweet past, but a foreshadowing for our tomorrows.
©2020 RJ Thesman – All Rights Reserved
For more writings about hope, check out my Amazon Author Page. All my books have some sort of theme regarding hope.