woensdag, december 2, 2020

The world seen through my window

De wereld vanuit mijn raam | The world seen through my windowSince the beginning of the covid crisis I feel more connected with nature. Where are we now? Autumn, nearly at its end already. In nature autumn is a time of harvesting. What is the harvest after eight months of covid?

I am taking an online facilitation course and in one of the sessions we were asked to take a picture of what the world looks like as seen through our own window. Through my window I watch the trees in my garden and in my neighbour’s garden: a ginkgo biloba, a magnolia tree and three chestnut trees (one with edible chestnuts). Confined at home I was able to carefully study them these past eight months. Take the chestnut trees for example. There are so many of them in The Hague. It is beautiful to follow its process to see how the tender leaves unfold in springtime, then the blossoms and later on the fruits, which the tree then sheds. I hear them fall onto the roof. And now the tree is turning inwards, preparing itself for a new cycle.

Observing nature from this spot I realise we are part of a living system. Part of it, not central in that system. I am very aware that we co-exist. The trees communicate and tell what is happening to them and thereby what is happening to the world.

Take the ginkgo: from here I can study the heart shaped leaves very well. I am worried now. During the hot, dry summer of this year the leaves of the part that grows above my roof have been burned. The gingko shows the effect of climate change.

Nature also shows something else: there is always movement. When on March 13 we went into the first lock-down, I decided to cycle to the beach each day. I did so for 100 days. And each time I took a picture of the sea and the beach. In doing so you see the movement. The interaction between wind, sand and water make it look different each time.

It is all about movement. Including for humankind. You always move towards something, however small your steps may be. That is what nature teaches me. Steadily I am moving towards the more beautiful world I want to see.

In fact to me that is the harvest of this covid time, call it a present if you like.  To look at and listen to what nature is telling us with greater awareness. I live on my own, but when I am in nature I never feel alone. There is so much to observe. And sometimes there is an added bonus, like the song of the nightingale in the dunes.

Willemijn Lambert, The Hague, the Netherlands