I am in the forest. The trees, waking up from their winter sleep, reveal fresh bright green leaves and the birds, flirting with each other, take my thoughts away from the city’s Corona mess.How wonderful it is to wander by myself, my mind still. To kick up last year’s brittle leaves and take a deep breath; filling the lungs with fresh air without being afraid of inhaling a virus that someone else just coughed out.
A couple comes towards me on a narrow forest path. While the man is busy watching where he steps, the somewhat older woman with him is eyeing me suspiciously, and keeps as far to her right as possible. Apparently, she is more anxious about coming too close to a possible source of infection than tripping over the dangerously winding tree roots. I try to send out calming energy and give her a friendly nod but it is impossible to keep the meter and a half distance. Bravely, I stay as far to my right as we pass each other but I feel the tension when that moment comes. My god, let’s hope it doesn’t get crazier than this.
Relieved, I continue on my way but then I notice just how busy the forest is. The air that I was just deeply inhaling doesn’t feel so fresh any more. I suddenly sneeze. Someone turns and looks at me. Should I say something? Should I say that I don’t have ‘it’ and that the sneeze was the spontaneous reaction of my overactive brain just trying to shake off an utterly ridiculous moment of panic?
A little further on I take a lesser known path that is unfamiliar to the daytrippers who don’t know their way around the forest. I have to regroup. Focus on the unfolding spring, on nature; which doesn’t bother itself with the problems people are struggling with at the moment. Forcing myself to take a deep breath and feel the air I sit on a fallen tree surrounded by young beech shoots. They have managed to wrestle their way out of the beech nuts and are now growing from between the dead branches of the tree they may have come from. The forest shows me the reality of life. Beautiful. And yes, sometimes ruthless.