Plantings in mall settings always feel like hasty afterthoughts to me. The plants that are chosen are nondescript low growing whose hardiness is seen to be its greatest asset. These planting strips act as are silent traffic monitors and janitors, capturing the trash of the parking lot. Somehow the presence of something green in a sea of concrete is suppose to make us forget the living and breathing earth that is pulsing under all that imposed crust. But Life is unimpressed with crust-and trash -and Best Buy and keeps doing what it does: surprises.
Recently while running errands, I drove into a parking lot and found a space next to one of the narrow planting strips.
As I was opened the door, I looked down and noticed a fluff of feathers that looked like the left over husk of a predictable predator/prey meeting. But as I looked a little closer the feather mass was not being gently buffeted by the wind as I had thought, the mass was breathing and its’ tiny heart was rattling the whole frame of what was a baby bird. Four inches from this wad of bird was the Mama who was unimpressed with my presence which was only a foot and a half away. As I placed my foot back into the car and rolled down the window Mama Bird and her brood sat under the shade of their urban undergrowth and did bird things-preening, pecking at the earth, and doing what humans find impossible to do-stand around do nothing particularly exciting.
Even after I ran my errand and returned to the car to watch and listen to the lushness of bird community that had escaped my notice on previous trips. The planting strip was twittering and chirping. This collection of “meh” bushes was actually someones home!
Life keeps happening. Stupid seems to thrive. Arrogant charges and expands but Life keeps happening even in the mall parking lot.
Harlequin Production’s summer show “60’s Chicks Too” here at the State Theater has taken off and will be running til July 19th! It is mighty fun and I am singing with killer band with three other sassy dames celebrating the girl groups of the 1960’s Indulge your inner flower child!l Tickets are available from Harlequin (http://harlequinproductions.org/) . Call 360-786-0151 (tel:360-786-0151) for more information.