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Smell the Roses

Smell the Roses

Missing the little things that make life's journey worth while.

As I traveled this journey we call life, I was constantly reminded to “Stop and smell the roses” or “Gather ye rosebuds while ye may”. What? I'm too busy for that now. Today, I have to get up at 5:00 AM and drive a hundred miles to help a client with a payroll problem. The daughter has her ballet lessons or junior has little league. I have that mandatory meeting to go to tomorrow. There's a seminar that must be attended by all staff. Then the dance recital is next weekend, so that's shot. The payoffs are coming up and I can't miss a single game. The lawn needs mowed and the wife wants the bedroom painted, again!

When do I ever have the time for such frivolities?

At least that's how it used to be. Now that I have ended my earning career, I've begun to notice those roses. They may not be roses in the literary sense, but the things that escapes us in our day to day lives as we whiz by it at 60 miles per hour.

The other morning I was looking out the dining room window at the hill across the way. Fresh snow had blanketed it during the night. As the sun rose, I could see the long shadows of the trees draped across the snow. Knowing that during the day they would march across the hillside like indicators on a sundial. Each shadow marking the passage of time. All in all, it had the appearance of a Bev Doolittle painting. I kept expecting a fur trapper or Indian on a pinto horse to come riding through it.

There was a Downy Woodpecker on the bird feeder I had made. It was nothing more then a part of a limb from a cedar tree. I had drilled a half a dozen large holes through it. Then filled them with a mixture of peanut butter, bird seed and crushed egg shells. It left and was followed by a Chickadee. When he finished, I heard it call as it flew away. A sort of thanks to some unknown benefactor.

A lone cloud drifted across the sky. It was being pushed by an invisible force high above me. I had no idea where it was going or when it would get there. For that matter, neither did the cloud. It was just content in being a cloud and following the breeze wherever it might take it.

This spring the Hummingbirds will return and I will put out the feeder for them. They are feisty and funny little fellows. One will feed and then fly into the tree. Sitting on a dead branch, he watches the feeder and swoops down on any interlopers that might steal his meal. Don't let the feeder get empty. When you go out to bring the feeder in they are constantly scolding you for being remiss in your duties. While putting the feeders back they incessantly ask you why it was taking so long. If you are patient, you can stand quietly still near the feeder and one will soon be down on it. He'll take the perch opposite you and look around the feeder to see if you are still standing there. Then he'll go about his business, but still stopping to see if you're there occasionally.

The Day Lilies will also start to sprout under the living room window. That means I have to go out and spray them before the deer find them. The fresh green shoots providing a welcome treat for them after the long winter, so I have to spray deer repellant on the shoots. That wouldn't be so bad if they didn't come back after the blooms start. Every year when the first flower blossoms and the next day they are all mysteriously gone. It seems the deer not only like to “Stop and smell the roses” too, but eat them as well. I only wish they would give me a chance to appreciate them.

All in all, the roses that I spoke of before are just the little things that we miss. They happen everyday, but we are too wrapped up in the here and now to notice. We are too busy keeping the wolves from the door and the family unit running smoothly. We should stop and take a moment to just look around us. Watch the shadows dance across the landscape. Admire a sunset. Listen to the songs of the birds. Relish the changes in the seasons. That's all it takes. Perhaps we should all be more like that cloud, just letting life happen and drift along with it.

The lesson is that we should all be smelling a rose or two along on our journey. For none of us know when or where this journey may end.

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Copyright © Copyright(c) 2013 / 2018 by James W

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