Sunday, January 3, 2021



I stepped onto the bridge. The sky was grey, the air cold but humid. My hair was sticking to my scalp under my wool bonnet. I folded into myself, boney arms dangling and walked out midway to gaze. 

This New Year's Eve, I was longing for a view. 

How it felt to breathe in openness after having been so constricted. These months which passed without passage. But the summit of the Mount Ventoux in the distance was shrouded in fog or perhaps falling snow. So I inhaled and let my eyes go soft with lack of focus. It was definitely not the first time I had found myself here. A kind of cure. Or a cure of kindness, much needed.

This past year, 2020, was my year of Solitude. The Great Battle of Isolation, one could say.

How do I dare to make a comment of it when so many have lost so much more than I? 

And yet, there were times, in all honesty, when I felt that the pillars of the necessity of my existence had crumbled. I stayed for community, for my beautiful family foremost and the tiny gleams of searching that let me believe deeply that I was not done yet. 

Everything is relative. We choose to forget, or to remember, all the time.

What is astonishing is the part of our hearts - my heart - that signals the beauty of life no matter what. How it keeps our blood pulsing on. If we are so lucky as to be able to pay attention to its call.

So that particular afternoon, I lifted my gaze and focused. 

And there, just beyond, floating underneath the last arches of the broken Pont d'Avignon, I saw two white sparks. My eyesight, which had always been impeccable until this year, made me question but yes, there they were. Two white swans. A pair for life. 

There are never, ever, swans upon this stretch of the Rhône.

And this, finally, was the recognition of what I had been listening to since the Solstice. Initial whispers to be heard of a shift and yet of something, finally, moving as strongly as the current of the river rushing below. Light like hope amidst all uncertainty. All inhumanity. Such a contrast against the shadows love brings.

Will those swans, with their exaggerated elegance but also biting, occasional mindless meanness...will they get us through?

I took them as a beacon, quelconque...perhaps, you shall too.

If you would like to hear my recording of this post, you may find it: here.

Well, my loves. We are still in this and yet I am so hopeful.
Let's keep looking for the moon amongst the clouds.

Every day, if we choose, we can be grateful for whatever little bit of good there is in our day.

With Love and Gratitude, always...always, always.

Be safe, be kind, be hopeful just because you can.




  1. Yes, I felt a twinge of hope at the stroke of midnight - finally entering 2021! I think those swans are a sign that we are turning the corner. Thank you for showing us bits of beauty; you have done your part in keeping us hopeful! Beautiful photos which seem shot on different days, but I guess the light was just shifting! Happy New Year, beautiful Sister!

  2. Entering 2021 and I am soo glad with your pictures and words. With the cofinement it is impossible to go to our house in Montsegur sur Lauzon. Health is much more important, I know, and we are well. But is is nice to get a bit of France and hear about the Mont Ventoux that we can see just outside our French house. Wish you a very happy 2021 from The Netherlands.

  3. That made me cry, both the poignancy and the hope. I love swans, like my father before me. He used to feed them by hand - always escaped unbitten. I've never dared try. Here's to a better 2021. It currently seems unlikely in England, but who knows?

  4. I do love a bridge - from symbology to engineering, always a marvel :-)
    Derek the widower swan was a frequent visitor to Granma Grace's garden, and well behaved except for the theft of some cat food. Nature inspires and entertains xx

  5. I could dive right into that sky. I especially love photo #5 for its sepia-toned colors. And even though I know I have been exceedingly lucky so far during this pandemic, like everyone, I am tired, irritable, and restless. (Give my my damn shot!!!) Wishing everyone a better 2021. Let's all stay hopeful.

  6. Thank you. Heather. it's good to be reminded about all that is good in our lives and for which we should be thankful. I am not feeling the best tonight and hope it is nothing more than a common cold. Longing for rest after a long day. I know you sometimes feel the same way too. Sometimes we push ourselves too hard. Take care.

  7. Lovely to read your post Heather and the hope you instilled. I love the messages and I was also particularly stuck by Pope Francis's mass on New Year's Day when in his homily he said "we must stop being confrontational", that hit a chord with me.
    Happy New Year. Helen Tilston

  8. Hello Heather
    Thank you for the lovely post. Your words are a meditation to my heart.

    I am resting well tonight. Tomorrow‘a plan is to hike...again. I’ve finally worn out my hiking boots...It seems everyone else on Vancouver Island is also hiking. I went to nine stores before I found another pair..success at last..The woman in one shop said “In her twenty years in the outdoors business she’s never been so busy...

    So we walk
    Breathe the fresh air
    Energize our souls

    Sending love to your heart...


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