When the cherry blossoms bloom around these parts, we have to run out and enjoy them immediately. They just suddenly bloom, everything is pink and beautiful, and the winds of spring invariably blow and they’re gone. Like pink snow, the petals fall and swirl around before disappearing.
It’s an ephemeral burst of life that comes every year.
My mother often calls these windy days in spring los vientos de cuaresma, the winds of Lent. I never gave it much thought since Lent and spring are, while not the same thing, certainly occurring at the same time.
And then I gave some deeper thought to the meaning of the wind blowing so insistently during Lent. What a fantastic presence of the Holy Spirit stirring up every nook and cranny in anticipation of Holy Week.
Oh boy. In the entertaining angels department, I just had a delightful little exchange with an elderly blind woman sitting quietly waiting on…I dunno. I don’t know where she came from or who she’s with…she’s just sitting outside my door. Waiting.
I went to pitch a few things into the shredder so I greeted her as I passed. I admit, the greeting was not very enthusiastic or even personal…just something that I tossed out from habit rather than conviction.
Shame on me.
So out the greeting goes, “How are you.” Not a question, just a statement released into the air.
It jolted me, as I was already 5 steps away from her when I heard it, and 10 when I processed it.
I turned around and went back to the woman, and I spoke again. She put out her hand to hold mine as we spoke, and I apologized for not hearing her. She told me that she hadn’t spoken.
I told her that I was sure she had spoken to me, and she asked what she said, to which I replied, “I’m blessed.”
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is when it got interesting. She nodded, as if agreeing with the statement, and then shook her head no, “It must have been the Holy Spirit.” Satisfied with herself, she waved me away, saying, “Continue praying.”
Dude. I don’t even know.