It has been raining for days here.
There is still a chill in the air, but the crocuses and snowdrops have bravely sprung up from beneath the soil and put their delicate petals out. Other flowers, like tulips and daffodils, are still growing their new leaves for the year. I track their progress, inch by inch, on the days I come home from school while there is still sunlight.
It finally feels like the Earth is coming back to life after a long period of dormancy, and though I have been awake all this time, it sometimes feels like I am just wandering from one dreamscape to the next.
Days seem to pass without my noticing. A whole month of the new year has come and gone, and progress on my various projects has been slow. It's hard not to blame school for taking up all of my time, but I also can't help but think that I haven't been very diligent lately.
I have had a few interesting writing assignments for an anthropology class, and they are mostly focused on observation, so I have been experimenting with transcribing what I see and experience into words in various ways. Unsurprisingly, this lends itself very well to journal-writing. It's true that the days seem to melt together at a glance, but in hindsight and upon closer inspection, a lot of strange and interesting things have happened. I just haven't written very much about it.
A lot of anthropological writing is dependent on taking detailed field notes. I've thought about journalling on-the-go, but it sometimes feels too personal to do it in a public space where anyone could glance over my shoulder and see what I am writing. I get a little bit nervous, and a little bit embarrassed, even when all I want to write about is something which would leave only the faintest of impressions, like how I have been attentively following the growth of sprouting bulbs in my garden.
If I had to analyze it, I'd suspect that in public I feel a compulsion to maintain a wall of polite distance between myself and others, and that involves revealing as little as possible about my personal thoughts. This is also the reason why I hardly ever do any sketching or drawing in public. I often wonder if this kind of self-imposed isolation is a result of the place or the time I live in. It's something I am not sure I could change, or even want to change. Which is also possibly just the result of our modern era and setting. How troubling...
Anyway, before I get too morose, I would like to switch gears and say that I am very excited to take some herb cuttings this spring. I have a few lavender plants which have done quite well over the past summer, and after sharing the dried flowers with some friends I realized perhaps they would like to try growing their own. I also have some mint that tends to grow all over the place by mid-June. Taking cuttings would be a good excuse to get rid of some of it. Documenting this process should be quite interesting!