Thursday, April 23, 2020

#sosmagic: Grotto Gifts

I’m joining an open community of writers over at Sharing Our Stories: Magic in a Blog. If you write (or want to write) just for the magic of it, consider this your invitation to join us.#sosmagic

#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. 

D. nodds. 
I place the small yellow paper in my coat pocket.

We continue to walk, six feet between us, on our path.  

13 comments:

  1. Oh, I'm glad you wrote. I'm glad you wrote this. Peace. Hope. We need these things...we need each other for these things.

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    1. Thank you for this invitation, Ruth. It helped me yesterday to think about and write this post and a reminder that I need more gifts like peace and hope, too.

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  2. How wonderful this is that people are creating these beautiful messages, Trina. That is marvelous! And, I love the pics you took, especially that tree hole. I wrote about tree holes today!

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    1. I love that people are creating these messages, too. I certainly need them. One thing that this pandemic has made me realize is how important it is to notice and linger on the little, but incredibly marvelous things!

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  3. What a wonderful discovery! I would have been in awe of the tree hollow, but OMG! the treasure in the grotto! Perhaps next time, you might bring your own word to add to the display.

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    1. I, too, love the tree hollow and the magic it inspires... I love this idea of bringing words to add to the display

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  4. What a beautiful idea and a wonderful way to spread kindness in messages!

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    1. Thank you! Indeed, it is a simple, yet so impactful way to spread kindness.

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  5. Walking is a soul soothing activity. To find those words was like a magical surprise. Hold the hope close to you. And people at the distance.

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    1. I agree! I don't know where I would be without walking. And I love those lines you shared with me: "Hold the hope close to you. And people at the distance."

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  6. Reading about this small wonder in the words delighted me. First sharing that a trail of abandoned grottoes exist gives me a lot of hope for the world, and second the fact that people are sharing offerings in that grotto inspires me. Could I do the same? Thank you so much for sharing your words.

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  7. There is so much here that drew me in. D. reminding you of social distancing, the camaraderie, the noticing and then the lovely surprise greetings. It refreshed me to join in! I took away peace and hope, too.

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  8. l am in awe of this writing. This story is beautiful.

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