I’m a creature of habit. I like to set up structures for myself and work within them. I’ve never had much trouble shifting my routines when things begin to feel stale, but having at least some kind of repetition from day to day helps me to feel productive and centered.
In the mornings I walk. Sometimes my walks are long and meandering and sometimes they are quick, a way to get somewhere. After my walk, I write. I sip tea and punch out sentences and edit photographs along the way. In the afternoons, if there are errands to run for work, I do those. The precise details of my days vary, but mostly they include traces of something familiar.
Traveling to find flower blossoms in the middle of the week is not part of my usual rhythm.
Last week, on Thursday, I boarded a train to go deeper into Brooklyn. Habits are hard to break and so I rode an accidental stop in the direction of Manhattan before circling back around. I got off at Grand Army Plaza and padded down Flatbush Avenue in search of cherry blossoms.
Inside the gates of Brooklyn Botanic Garden the trees were at their peak. Festooned in giant puffs of pink, they looked like creatures out of Jim Henson’s studio. I half expected them to break into song.
Below them, whole packs of tiny humans were shaking up their daily routine.
Teachers and chaperones made attempts at order.
“Line up; you’re still in school, you know.”
But under the cherry blossoms on a mid-week morning at the end of April, there’s no such thing as the regular routine.
“It smells like heaven here, ” said one little girl. And of course I believed her.