The other night the change of season arrived on a buffeting wind. There was a vast and joyful spirit, warm and tumultuous on the air, Spring had blown into town, brimming with mischief and raucous cheer.
So Monday, warm and blue, with the tail of that spirit still tangling with the branches and dancing among the clouds, (fat and white, their edges still blue and silvered with a promise) seemed a perfect day to recommence cycling in the park.
I take great enjoyment in cycling the bushland park at Braeside on a bright spring day, however, indulging in Winter, averse to discomfort, if it becomes an ordeal and hazard in mud and downpour, I’d rather stay in. So I tend not to go much in winter. Yes, readjusting, there will be aches and pains.
The bush was green, somehow comforting. The air curling in eddies on my skin smelled of moist earth and sun brightened leaves. Sunny and mushroomy. If I remembered what Gold Tops looked like I certainly would have stopped and picked some. Birdsong turned from height to height, and red and blue parrots seemed to be caught mid-flight in preternatural bright moments, just for me to admire.
And there in the distance, startling as I rounded a bend along the track, topped by flying pennants, almost glowing was the candy-coloured brightness of a circus tent. One of my favourite images, the sight of a circus or carnival above the landscape, filled with all sorts of promise and mystery.
I imagined the painted horse-drawn wagon, the somersaulting dogs and caparisoned ponies, the shambolic clowns, the captivating acrobats, the popcorn and spun sugar, the mighty breath of a lion’s roar, of a bush circus from childhood. The actuality is, over there it’s all housing developments and angular pre-fab factories, and even a monolithic sports stadium. But the actuality doesn’t matter. What’s important is the illusion. And the irrelevancy of time, of the distance between moments.
So, a perfect day for a ride in the park. The days following it has been all rain and gales, but that caress of warmth remains in the air, the great spirit, that clown spring, is here to stay, at least for a season, embracing in merriment, doffing hats from heads, dashing washing from lines, filling the air with chatter and calling green things up from the earth.