If I don’t appreciate this perfect day, then I don’t deserve to live here. It’s a festival out there.
The ground is strewn with crimson maple flowers, golden forsythia blossoms swing gaily in the breeze, and—stand aside—elderflowers are about to explode. Tulips open one luscious petal at a time, sunny daffodils and narcissus nod appreciatively, nosy little lily of the valley shoots poke up everywhere, and forget-me-nots prepare to fill every nook and cranny with soft baby blue—after a month we’ll start taking them for granted—and then they’ll disappear. “Oh dear,” we’ll say, missing them already.
Our towhee has left town, but we are currently entertained by purple finches, fox sparrows, hummingbirds, and one extremely pecky woodpecker who absolutely adores eaves troughs and metal ladders.
Down at the shore amorous kingfishers call longingly to one another, shy blue herons tentatively dip their long toes into tidal pools, and swooping bank swallows busily burrow out nests along the cape’s edge.
Things are so close to perfect; but to make the Cove just one speck more beautiful we tuck yellow Women’s Institute bags in our pockets and head over to the highway for some final cleanup. (Gloves on, of course.) At the bridge I clamber down to survey the winter’s offerings: someone in the district likes those green cans of Moosehead beer but can’t wait to get home and throw them away properly—one more sip and over she goes! Half a dozen of those tossed over the guardrail. A fisherman has brought along a healthy jug of lemonade: too much to finish—why, down here by the stream is as good a place as any to leave it. Cigarette boxes (not too many though, maybe those scary photos are paying off), a vaporizer, Tim Horton’s cups, two masks and some paper plates. A modest haul. Less than some years.
We go up our road around the corner, out of sight of any houses: here’s another mask. (Do masks blow out of cars? Possibly.) An electric motor too heavy to lift: we drag it to the roadside. An empty bag labeled “Pink Cush cannabis” and an empty bottle formerly containing 0.0% Grolsch beer. (Imagine! Expensive non-alcoholic beer in a fancy bottle! I didn’t know such things existed.) A large bottle with a little liquid in bottom that smells like lemonade and alcohol. Another large bottle with some yellow liquid that smells like—well, something else. (We always empty the bottles because they’re too heavy to carry: maybe we’ll stop doing this.) And some deflated balloons. Nice! Someone was having a party for their kids. But who needs old dead balloons? Let’s go up to the woods and toss ’em in the ditch.
The three of us take a photo of our efforts and give each other a high five. That’s done for another year… or at least until tomorrow. Oh well, we do what we can.
I do I do I do appreciate this perfect day! So do I get to stay here? I do? Oh thank you!