Spring in Scandinavia. A slow, stubborn process that requires a lot of waiting.

April 6th, 2014, 6pm

Just after dinner this evening, I went out for a walk. From Järntorget I follow the stream leading out from the city into Lake Hjälmaren. I pass the castle and Henry Allard’s park on my right and the old cinema Roxy on my left side. I always think to catch a movie there, maybe something pretentious and Italian, since I live so close, but I never do. I don’t have the energy for Italian pretentions, it seems. I walk past the Funeral home, and the old k-marked buildings that the sororities somehow have managed to claim. I wait for the light to turn green at a (for a medium sized city in Sweden) busy intersection, and then I walk up to the university hospital and into the big park behind it. The park is beautiful and subdued in its faded colors of early spring, but even in the lushness of summer, it is always like this, like it has a time and a special light of its own. I keep a wary eye to the Canada geese walking about. They are the kings of this space and they know it.

The stream widens the further to the east I go. I pass the Skebäck bridge which is closed for maintenance and has been forever. I pass the allotments that I’ve never seen anyone tend to. After a while I reach the big drawbridge by Naturens hus and I cross it. There’s a trail following the stream on the right side as well, and it leads out to the mouth of the lake not too far from here. Through the trees I can see the sky, in faint pastels. I can tell from the light, that the sun will set soon, but there’s still some time left. The woods are dark, the trees solemn and grey with their long, naked limbs, but you can sense that something is stirring, changing underneath. You know that it’s just a matter of time. You can see it in the hard, diamond shaped buds growing on a multitude of twigs and branches, catching your eye with their obnoxious green color. Soon, it says. Patience.

I continue walking. Suddenly, there’s an abrupt change in the environment. For a while I pause, looking at the flat landscape where land and water seem to stretch and lean into each other beneath a worried sky. There’s a narrow strip of land going out into the lake, creating a trail intersecting the water. There’s a runner there. It looks funny, as if he is running on water, chased by his own reflection. Just ahead of me, by the waters edge, there are benches facing the water. I sit down. I remove my earphones, and the outside world breaks in. The sound from the birds is deafening, even after the light has waned.

Christine, Vosco, Shu, David Wade and 2 others said thanks.

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Sanna Karlsson

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