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of london blossoms, porch parties + the musical qualities of a fine beard

April 3, 2012

I woke up early this morning to the ripples of thunder and early morning grey outside my windows; it was the musical nuances of Bon Iver’s “Holocene” transformed into color and light and softness. And oh, how this kind of cool, grey rainy spring day makes me dream.

I dream of springtime in London. There are days where I dream so deeply of that place that it startles me when I breathe in and it doesn’t smell like damp green woods in the Berkshire countryside, like the oil from Paddington station train tracks, like a brewing cup of Yorkshire tea, and the wet paws of the most handsome poodle on the planet. I imagine wandering through the cobbled streets of Reading, of taking a lazy afternoon to sit outside at Bill’s and watch the blossoms do their part in the quiet business of spring. I crave clotted cream on warm scones and daydream of making pink meringues with Jettie and three giggling little girls. These are the dreams that have bred lifelong aches in me; an ache for something so much bigger than a place or a person; the kind of ache that is a beautiful, CS Lewis-esque longing of which I will never know the end.

I dream of summer evenings, listening to Fleet Foxes and drinking cold beer on the front porch with new roommates. I only have one month left in my tiny studio and then I will be reintroducing myself into co-habitation again. Luckily, I’m starting out with my sister Johanna and her family for the first few months, before living with three beautiful friends. I know my darling sister will be patient with my puttering around, talking to myself, and my wide, stress eyes when I realize that, after three years alone, that much people time is a little overwhelming. But even in the overwhelmingness, I can’t wait to make a home with people again. I can’t wait for the smell of someone making coffee, “Downtown Abbey” marathons, people to come home to and to learn from, throwing porch parties for no reason, laughing until all of us are bent on the floor, crying. I can’t wait to make a home that is beautiful and welcoming, to see stacks of books mixed together, and to do that hard, wonderful work of being in community with each other.

I dream of beards and banjos, and road trips to see the Avett Brothers for the very first time. Next month, a group of friends and I will pack a car full of music, snacks, and the kind of cute sundress that is perfect for an outdoor folk concert and head to Columbus to partake in this most holy musical rite: seeing the Avett Brothers perform live (!). Considering at least three of us are what I like to call “beard connoisseurs”, I think it’s safe to say that we all are in a flutter not only from the amazing, amazing music we will hear, but the fine bearded menfolk we are bound to see and thank the good Lord for creating. And since we’re in Columbus, I really hope a side trip to Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream will be in order. I truly just cannot, cannot wait.

But in all this dreaming, I also am trying to be conscious of the fact that this is indeed Holy Week and to take time to take that seriously. The series over at Mama:Monk has been helpful in that, especially the poem in today’s post. I treasure the moments where I can see and thank God for what is precious and cherished in my life, yet I hope to be the kind of person who can be silent, be still, be mindful of my own humanity, and be evermore conscious of the reality of the empty tomb.

Hosanna, hosanna.
God save us, God save us.

What are you dreaming of today?

[image credit here, here, and here]

One Comment leave one →
  1. hopefulleigh permalink
    April 3, 2012 1:32 pm

    So jealous you get to see Avett Brothers! But at least I have a Jeni’s Ice Cream in town. 🙂

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