The wild strawberries are ripe. Little splashes of red winking at us as Jasmine and I wandered on our walk today.
I used to pick wild strawberries and make jam. It took hours to pick enough to make even a few jars of jam and it was a labour of love for Mark who appreciated the effort and loved the jam. There was time. Time to spend long afternoons picking wild strawberries, saskatoons, blueberries and after a hike up to the abandoned mine on the mountainside, prized huckleberries.
There was time. In Hazelton we had two television stations…..on a good day. Letters and updates – contact with friends and family came by way of letters in Box 84, South Hazelton. If we were home to answer the phone we did and if we weren’t home the phone just rang and rang. There were no voicemail messages, no robo calls, no text messages. Term papers were typed on a manual typewriter. There were no ear buds keeping us plugged in and it was just the quiet; the sounds of the river, the birds and the occasional bear crashing through the woods in search of the same berries I was after.
Now my phone is in my pocket on my walks and listen to CNN on my bluetooth hearing aids as I walk . I snap pics of Jasmine just to text to Mark as he is at work. I watch television shows chosen from hundreds of channels and movies on demand. Work follows me home with laptops and cell phones and doesn’t end with an 8 hour day.
Today my heart hurts because someone I knew only from television and books took his life. We’ve become interconnected with strangers in intimate ways sharing dreams and sorrow in ways I never could have imagined all those years ago.
Today I am a bit scared at being called back for a second more intense MRI with all that can mean again in ways I never could have imagined all those years ago.
Today I feel frustration, helplessness and anger watching the shit-show the selfish, spoiled child running the USA is spreading around our world in ways I never could have imagined all those years ago.
I’m not saying it used to be a better place all those years ago, but there was time to pick wild strawberries.