Thursday, February 23, 2012

Sacrifice of Love: A Journal Entry

The weather has finally turned a corner in the town where we have been residing in England for just over a month, for now anyway. I won't get into the concerns over the warmer temperatures it's creating in the flat, and what that might do to the kitchen, which we've been using as a refrigerator, not having one. Or the slight worry over potential food poisoning, some of us tend react to even the best and freshest foods in negative ways.

Walking through the park today, passing through the opening of the ancient Roman wall that surrounds city center, and passing the castle we have become so familiar with, we were struck with the massive beauty of this English town. So much ivy, our favourite plant, grows heartily in such variety of versions and colours everywhere, among the branches and plants made dry and dormant by winter temperatures.

Flowers are springing up all over town, bird and squirrels move around everywhere.  People are out in droves, children playing on the playgrounds, mothers with strollers. An old man sits on a bench, his motorized scooter in the distance. A squirrel jumps up on a bench we were sitting on, approaches us, begging for food. We pet its nose, and upon realizing we didn't have any treats to offer today, departs. We often walk through the park and have conversations with some of the squirrels who sit on higher structures, while they nibble on food manically. They are all friendly gray squirrels, not afraid of people or ashamed to beg, who are not native to England, but were introduced in the late 19th, to early 20th century, and have wiped out  most of the red squirrel populations that inhabited the area. Sometimes we laugh at the analogies of this happening that we create in our head, and the similarities between animals and humans (animals).

On the way home, carrying our shopping bags and enjoying the solitude provided by music on our iPod, we pass over the small bridge of the narrow river we are required to cross in order to get in and out of town from "home". I stop and watch the swans, they might be my favourite thing to see with each trip into town center. Their interactions with the other birds, various breeds of ducks, coots, moorhens, and the occasional heron, are interesting.

Having gone to London last weekend we realized why James, our boyfriend, chooses not to live there, and instead choose to stay here, in this town he loves. Overtaken by it all we realized how much he must truly love us, to be willing to leave this beauty, this town he has lived in almost his whole life, to be with us in America, a place he is not overly fond of.

It sacrifice he is willing to make, makes me sad, and happy, overwhelmed and thankful, that we have found someone like him, even if we don't all love him like he would like us to, most of us are pleased to call him our boyfriend.

~ Frank

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