Thursday, February 3, 2011

Look Through Any Window

When I moved into this house many years ago, my next-door neighbor was an elderly woman who lived alone.

She seemed pleasant enough to me at the time. She would slowly walk into her back yard and tend her small garden with a large straw hat and a crooked back. Now an then she would wave, but we rarely spoke.

Now I was a good neighbor to this established neighborhood, trimming my grass and pruning my shrubs on a regular basis. I took out my trash and hung my laundry within the proper decorum of the norm and though somewhat younger than my neighbors, I blended in by my aloofness.

When the girl who would be my future wife moved in, she complained about the old woman next door staring in the windows.

I hadn’t noticed before, but the woman would stand at her window on the side of the house. Perhaps she was absorbing the sunshine or just enjoying the greenery or just staring into space, which did not bother me, but it certainly bothered my wife.

The relationship between the two women became increasingly uncomfortable, with the windows being covered by curtains and then opaque glass. The privacy issue was almost humorous to me until a fence had to be constructed hiding us from the rest of the world.


Today, I am that old woman.

I find myself pacing around the small abode I call home when times are cold or rainy or no motivation can be produced. The outlet for entertainment apart from electronic bombardment is to look out the window.

Learning to appreciate the ever-familiar images dancing in the wind or rain or the clouds sweeping the surroundings in shadows, the crackle of the leaves in fall and the splash of colors of spring orchestrated by the chatter of a constant parade of visitors resting in the shelter and comfort of the solitude has brought me a new understanding of what that old woman was really experiencing.

I’m aware my actions may be viewed with curiosity, but I feel no animosity.

The same is true to analysis using self-experienced perceptions not taking the effort to understand or appreciate, then perhaps to relish the behaviors of someone's lifestyle.

Look through any window, what do you see?


Art said...

Look through any window, yeah
Any time of day
See the drivers on the roads
Button down their heavy loads

Where do they go
Moving on their way
A-driving down the highways, and the byways
Where do they go
Moving on their way
Drivers with their shy ways, and their sly ways

TripleG said...

Stuck inside like 90% of the population lately, I've been looking out for some sunshine (forget it) or cardinals (several, and they don't lose their color like the goldfinches). What I see, however, is every window with tightly closed blinds. They don't want to look out even more than someone else looking in. There are houses behind us, whose occupants, in about fifteen years, I have never seen; if they ever leave, it's from garages. I ASSUME there are people living there, but who knows. Maybe it's because there are no fences or hardly anything growing over 18" high, but how can anyone live without natural light? Or seeing anything more alive than the TV?