Morning Walks

We’re early enough in a DC summer (or late enough in a DC spring) so that the morning weather tends to be a pure and embrace-worthy delight, rather than the suffocating humidity we all know is to come. Brisk, a vibrant, near vibrating green of leaf-laden trees lining streets, their flowering finished for the season — but simply turn your attention over here to witness the newly arrived roses, whose sometimes delicate, sometimes overbearing sweetness perfumes the mornings and evenings alike. Vividly shimmering and alive, these mornings.

If we’re being honest, Lucas’s shrieks, heralding of the arrival of morning proper (sun’s up somewhere, right?) as he squirmed happily during breakfast is *possibly* what woke Carolina up, and not something more idyllic as would befit such a pleasant morning as this. Whatever the cause, she materialized herself and presented us with the delightful suggestion of a family walk. She typically uses this block of time to brew herself some coffee or, lately, tea as a necessary precursor to getting a little work done before the apartment door explodes inward and in bursts Lucas, Mirabel, and me. Not so today! (side note: a delight to witness her slow but inevitable immersion into coffee brewology)

Today we walked, our destination and purpose unknown beyond the immediate experience of moving through space together, sharing time. At the first corner we came to, and perhaps in response to the group perceptible hesitancy, Mirabel pulled us to the right. This seemed as good a direction as any to go in, despite its being start of the same route that she, L., and I nearly always travel in the mornings. At the next intersection, having incubated the plan as we traveled the block, I suggested we go get some fresh coffee beans (I should clarify — freshly roasted coffee beans — from Wydown, whose excellent stock (which isn’t reliable stocked, which isn’t excellent), aside from one dud (which is reliably stocked) is generally a reliable source of delight, except of course when it isn’t.

This time it wasn’t. None of the desired beans in sight, and the perpetually rude barista (always a roll of the dice on whether or not he, dour on his best day, or one of the other three, nowhere near as dour, even on their very worst days, will be at the register) is at the register.

I should for a minute, or a moment, pause and acknowledge Caro’s gracious pep-talk about the need, given the unexpected opportunity to do so, to recalibrate my thoughts and anxieties about how and where I’m using my time, and why. We’ve tread over this ground before, and each time we return — and this one no exception — she’s patient and supportive.

The exchange is a reminder in many ways both of love and of the sharing of that love, which is also love, a recursive love, the splitting and joining of life’s building blocks that permeates all levels, creating and destroying, a pulsating, oscillating, rhythmic love, love and life, and love, and life, which is a recursive love, the perpetual engine, an interconnectedness we’ve tried to ignore, to stomp out, colonize, exploit, degrade, pollute, eradicate, we of a capitalist orientation, we of cogs and widgets — nevertheless, love persisted — my time is her time is our time is our life is our love.

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