A wonderful thing happens sometime in June most years. The anticipation nearly kills me, every time, but the actual event still surprises me. After months of darkness, of long nights and foggy, cloudy days, after seeing dead brown everywhere I look, suddenly, one morning it is green.
Everything turns green almost at once. Birds sing outside my window, the days get sunny, flowers and bushes bloom overnight. And it is green. This is my favorite part of living in Kodiak. The air is still a little brisk, vegetation hasn’t gotten so thick that you have to bushwhacked through it, but when you hike up a ridge or along the beach, everything smells alive. It’s wonderfully invigorating.
Kodiak has a short spring, at least while we’ve been here. It is almost as if the island feels an urgency, that winter is coming again and so we have to maximize summer. Berries are ripe before you know it, the salmon are running and the eagles move away from town to rivers for fishing season. As for the humans, they are outside every opportunity they get. Because summer is short and the green will only last so long. We soak up the energy and revel in the brilliance of Alaskan beauty.
Summer makes joy bubble up inside of me. It always has. I feel exuberant at the beauty of nature and the glory of life. Because life is glorious. Summer brings “joy unspeakable and full if glory, a glimpse of the excitement and glories of the truer world. It is hard to imagine anything more beautiful than this, but greater beauty awaits. It is hard to imagine greater joy than this, but it will come. It is hard to imagine being more alive than this, but when that day comes, we’ll realize what a shadow we were in.