Today I walked north down King Street.
It was apparent that the city had been scrubbed. The sky had taken snow and burnished all the grey streets and grey walls and grey windows. I hadn’t known the city was made of white and gold. There was not a spot of grey left; the blue sky must be well practiced when it comes to polishing her grey city Aberdeen since North Sea has a bad habit of decorating it in fog. Everything crunched and sparkled.
And every surface was wet and gold. The street was like a blinding river of light, it rushed into your face and down your eyes until your head was filled to the brim with bright. The bright was so loud in your head the rest of the world was muffled and dim, like it was too far away to really touch, even though you were practically drowning in it. The busyness of King Street became a quiet bustle, like a dream of clean, whirring machines — cars and buses and skinny university students, all going, going in the bright of the street.
Even the stone cemetery on the right was brisk and shining, each headstone laid with a fresh line of snow on its top and the bare trees hung with tidy tinsel and ice.
It was very clear to me that I was in a snow globe that someone had gently (so as not to ruffle the snow) set on a windowsill in full sunlight.
Bright and loud. Brisk and bright. Everything clean and everything gold. And all of it rushing.
But my baby in the stroller knew only the bit of dusk that filtered through his eyelids. His world was dark and soft, tucked up as it was under the stroller shade. He sailed forward, swathed in a sea of blue blanket, with the peace of a starry night. Never was rest so oblivious to roaring light. He was my baby bear, hibernated and quiet, waiting for mother to wake him once we arrived home.