It is the 1st week of October, I live in the tropics, my country is right on the equator, and we don’t have seasons such as winter, spring, summer and autumn. We mainly have hot, rainy and cold seasons. Day and night hours are fairly even. We don’t need air conditioning as a necessity for normal life. We are in the rainy season. This is why the condition of the Tree outside puzzled me. What was wrong with it? Why was I noticing it now?
I had moved from my much-loved working area to the dining table. Working from there felt and smelt like being at breakfast all day – and those chairs are not made of sitting for long hours. The move was not easy to make. In six years I had become comfortable in my old space. I had made every effort to make that way. The chair fit right to fit my back. Cushions and decor made the setting feel tranquil and inspiring – the perfect work home space. So why move?
The neighbourhood I live in is changing, expected change and that change is happening next door. A 20 storey apartment building is coming up and they are digging the foundation. From 8AM in the morning to 5PM in the evening we are subjected to ear-splitting drilling, machines pecking away incessantly at hard rock; that one can’t hear themselves think, trucks driving in and out, clouds of dust in the air and on out clothes and furniture. I had to find a place in the house I could bury myself from all the madness outside and the dining room was that place. Therefore I added a cushion to the dinning chair for more comfort and another on the table to raise my laptop to eye level. A few days in I was getting by and adjusting to the surroundings of the new work area when I noticed the Tree.
To the far left of the dining area though the French windows there once was a tree, a beautiful tree; when it was in its full glory it had small yellow flowers that added a burst of colour to its branches heavy with green strong leaves. However that was not the tree I was looking at now. It had no flowers and bare branches with a few weak leaves. I got off my seat and move closer. It looked pitiful, alone and neglected.
As I watched it, I began to reflect on instances when our lives have mirrored the condition of the Tree – pitiful, alone and neglected.Where we once flourished and displayed our grandeur; proud as peacocks, we now hang our heads in shame, defeated and empty; nothing to show anymore. Sound familiar? Or like someone you know?
Why does this happen to us? What happened to my tree? Will we survive and bloom again? These questions harassed me for several days.
I am looking for answers.