Samstag, 28. April 2012

Summer is coming

Sitting as I am sitting here, in a light summer dress on the balcony and looking into the blazing sun nobody would believe me that April is usually a cold and rainy month in Austria. This week the weather here has been like in midsummer and I have spent every minute I could anyhow spare outdoors: studying, reading, eating, all on the balcony or in the garden.

This is the way I'm normally spending my summer holidays, from sun-up to sundown in the garden. Graz has 250,000 inhabitants and I am living close to the city centre, but within the fences of my garden it seems as if the whole city was a million miles away.

Today I had the irresistable impulse to take some photographs of this garden which is as familiar to me as my own soul. I suddenly had the strange feeling that looking at the flowers and the soft green grass I was looking at something that did not exist anymore, looking into the past. It was a very sad and frightening feeling, as if the moment I watched the little garden it already faded into a memory. Even now, looking down from the balcony I cannot resist the sensation that everything I'm looking at is drifting away from me a little more with every passing minute. Soon it will be gone, because this garden where I took my first steps and learned how to ride a bicycle is the living picture of my childhood.

While I am typing these words I almost expect the trees to dissolve in front of my eyes because the little girl who used to climb them is gone too. All the bugs and butterflies ought to disappear, because there is no laughing child left to run after them with flying hair.
Only the dandelion clock seems to belong here, because its white threads are carried away by the wind to unknown directions, much like the girl who isn't little in the least anymore.

I am not satisfied with the pictures I took, they are pretty, but they appear to me like images of a place I am only superficially acquainted with, not like my home.
For me, the warm half of the year is always the time to dream, to make plans of the future and to wonder what surprises and adventures life is going to hold for me. I have found that when the sun blazes down unto the earth, when every breeze seems to whisper of the sea or the deserts of the Orient and the air is so hot it seems almost touchable, the spirit is lighter than ever. The reason why I don't like the photographs is that all the dreams and hopes I have had first while playing in this garden and later wandering it are not visible on them. Such things cannot be captured by a camera.

 It is getting warmer and warmer and soon it will really be summer, not only a very hot April pretending to be July. This is not only literally true, but, something I have realised for the first time today, also metaphorically: I am no child anymore. The spring of my life is drawing to an end and summer is coming. I know that summer will have its own places and images, but looking at the garden again, at my garden, I am a little sad, because spring was a lovely time. No photograph in the world could capture its beauty.


  1. What a lovely garden! You are lucky to have it. And you've written a beautiful essay too. :)

  2. You have a gorgeous garden! Can you please send some of the summery weather to the UK? It's been rain, rain, rain non-stop all week and whilst it's not cold, it is very dreary. On the positive side, at least my plants are growing well....

  3. What a lovely garden, and such beautiful reflections.