I wasn't going to go see the cherry blossoms at High Park this year. I wasn't in the mood for the long subway ride, I didn't want to deal with the throngs of people, I'd been to see them just last year. Or was it two years ago? Good grief, could it have been three years since I'd been?
This afternoon I took my camera and headed west.
The trees have been in full bloom since last Friday and now the petals are starting to fall, drifting down like fat snowflakes. Chubby toddlers chased after them, trying to catch the petals between starfish fingers and clapped hands.
There were thousands of people walking the paths, posing for pictures, setting up picnics beneath the trees. For once it seemed like no one was in a hurry and everyone was in a good mood. If you wanted to illustrate Toronto's multiculturalism, you couldn't ask for a better snapshot.
After a week of pristine blue skies, they're calling for rain tomorrow. Looking up, it seemed impossible. That blue!
But nothing – good weather, beautiful flowers, ice cream bars – lasts forever. And lately the time seems to pass ever more quickly, with one blossom season melting into the next, and the next. It starts to feel as though marking the time is pointless, and then makes me think I should make an even greater effort to note the days.
In my second year of university I had a professor who started each class by reciting Psalm 118:24. He was a big man with a big voice, big opinions and strong beliefs. Every day his voice boomed out across the lecture hall. "This is a day the Lord hath made; let us rejoice and be glad."
I thought of him today. I think of him often, remembering his exhortation, that daily call to worship. It didn't matter much to me at 21, but 14 years later, I'm starting to understand.
For there is, really, so much to be glad about.