So today, this fine sunny day in the last fortnight of winter, I beheld my Rose City brethren in their glory.
A tall man in a track suit speed-walked across Tabor's brow, shoulders held high, back straight as a board. His strides were long and straight-legged. He held a cell phone to his ear. "Yeah, I'm up on Tabor. Trying to get my mind right." He trumpeted his words to the world as well as his cell phone. "Rebecca and I called it off today. Yes. It's the right thing." Something in his tone told me he was speaking to a woman acquaintance.
I imagined her to be a platonic friend, possibly a former lover. When I was in those shoes, those were who I would call. Every man knows there is no consolation so sweet as a sympathetic woman. (And if we're being honest, somewhere deep down in the psychological soup of our motives, there's a faint longing for some sympathy nookie. I'm not sure it exists, but sad men ever seek for it like Galahad and the Grail.)
Skaters took the slopes in determined strides, their boards tucked against their hips. They spoke in short phrases, breathless from the exertion. Up to the top where they pushed off for the ride all the way from the from the summit to the gate by Reservoir 6.
Two high school students, a beautiful blonde girl and a thin black man whose accent revealed him to be African, sat in the grass. They spoke to each other softly. She lay her head on his shoulder.
On the slopes above the soapbox derby track there were hacky-sackers and a group of young people surrounding an Asian man playing a guitar. Dog-walkers were everywhere and some folks were tossing a frisbee.
Peaceful Portlanders out enjoying this beautiful winter's day here in the Rose City. It reminded me of a book from my childhood. And to Think that I Saw it on Mulberry Street, it was called. By Dr. Seuss.
Remember that book?