Tremendous change comes to my neighborhood when the last stubborn snow bank melts into the earth. Suddenly I notice people I feel like I haven't seen in months, and they look different. The children look like they have grown and the old people look more stooped. Little Noah from 2 doors down speaks with no hesitation and Mrs. Lee from across the street speaks with more. I forgot that Jan has such shiny brown hair, it's been months since I've seen her without a toque. Everyone looks thinner without all the winter layers on. Hello people, we have so much to tell each other.
Conversations that were kept short by freezing fingertips and icy nostrils stretch into back fence meditations on an heirloom tomato that will be this summers' experiment. Sprouts and hope assault us every time we peek out the window to see what is going on across the street. Little pieces of information start making their way onto front porches, back decks, and that sunny spot on the drive way.
"You know that family that lives down at the end of the lane way? The ones with the little brown dog? they moved across town." Spirited away, like snowflakes on the wind.
"Did you hear Jade's grandmother died? She was ninety-two." Also spirited away.
"Did you read in the paper the whole town has to switch to using clear garbage bags?" Our trash exposed for everyone to see.
"I found out the church is re-paving their parking lot this year." A big black mark. "I saw that the tattoo parlor is closed." A stained vacancy.
All these things changed while we were complaining about the cold and hurrying to our doors.
There are things that are dependable; the sidewalk snow plow ripped up a large strip of grass, we'll have to re-seed again. Garbage and beer cans keep accumulating in the patch of lilacs behind the Martin's house, like a not-so-well kept secret. The potholes in the alleyway are becoming ever cavernous. Here's my advice: watch your step. The variances are as small as the transformations are slow. The sunrise looks the same and a novelty each morning. The night sky in now an inky navy blue instead of all encompassing black. But in my neighborhood we are content to change into flip flops and contemplate who will have the most zucchini come August. Maybe for variety we should plant summer squash instead.
by Wayne Chan | May 3rd 11:55 am
My daily commute is like a small gear of mechanical time, of epicycles upon epicycles, where days turn to months and to years, and the seasons cycle through. The rhythms of time are constant, but the changes they bring are not.
by Brendan Harrison | Apr 12th 12:54 pm
When white supremacists moved into my neighbourhood, I was forced to reconsider what community meant to me.
by george ilsley | May 3rd 1:44 pm
The neighborhood of Broma in Vancouver (around Broadway and Main) used to have salmon streams and a temperate rainforest. Now it has hipsters.
by Monica Meneghetti | May 2nd 11:45 pm
Queer Banffites come in every stripe but, like other wildlife, most of us are well-camouflaged.
by Christin Geall | May 3rd 10:16 pm
In my neighborhood, houses float out to sea. They’re jacked up from their foundations, lifted onto trucks, and barged away.