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Thursday, April 23, 2020
#sosmagic: Grotto Gifts
#sosmagic: Grotto Gifts
"You're getting a bit too close," D. gently reminds me and outstretches his long arm to make half of a "T". I raise mine to do the same. He is right. I veered too close to him. Again. We aren't six feet away from each other anymore. Even though we're walking outside, even though both of us have been homebound for weeks, even though we have not been around many other people except for the occasional trip to the grocery store donning face masks, we do not have enough distance between us. I move over on the trail, hiking on the unpaved part. D. moves beyond the other edge of the path.
After over a month, I am still not used to social distancing.
My neighbor and friend, D., lives alone. When my children are at their dad's house, I am solo, too. For days at a time, D. is often the only person I talk to, face-to-face (through a safe distance, of course).
"Check out that perfect tree hole." D. points to a stunning tree hollow. I gaze at the tree cavity. Suddently, a bit of yellow catches my eye.
"D.! See that in the grotto?"
One of my favorite local trails includes a series of long-ago neglected, abandoned grottos. The grotto ahead hosts a surprise: a small piece of art made from natural objects. It's a collage of forest treasure, including a collection of handwritten uplifting words.
D. and I stand in awe. He hangs back while I explore the grotto art first.
"I love this so much," I gush, "Look at all of the words on the sticks. Hope. Breathe. Comfort. Calm. I adore how these words are incorporated with beauty of nature."
I stand back while D. explores.
There are a few paper words scattered on the group, perhaps disturbed from the day's breeze.
The word hope is printed on the piece of paper I pick up with my glove.
D. picks up the piece of paper with the word peace written on it.
"Should we take the words from this spot?" I inquire. Suddenly, I look around to see if anyone else is nearby. Yet, we are alone.
"Well, I could use some peace, " D. responds.
"I can always use more hope." I share.
"Perhaps whoever created this envisioned that people would be delighted and honored in finding these words?" I suggest, captivated with the thought that others are comforted like I am in discovering found words.
I place the small yellow paper in my coat pocket.
We continue to walk, six feet between us, on our path.
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