I’ll pretty much read anything about Carl Sagan, so when my weekly omnibus of goodness from Brain Pickings arrived with a quote from him on books I followed its lure to the Brain Pickings website (if you haven’t discovered Brain Pickings and the curation of Maria Popova, do your self a favor and subscribe to the weekly newsletter). This led me to watch a remarkable short film by Penny Lane, created for her husband as a wedding gift and based on Carl Sagan, the space program and the story of how he and his wife fell in love. It’s inspiring – take the time to watch it, and read the post on Brain Pickings if you like.
I watched this valentine to the imagination and the possible on Mother’s Day, after spending Saturday with our two grandchildren at our place. I felt so grateful for the chance to be there when Marcelaine had a moment to lie in the hammock and really see for the first time the trees surrounding our house. Hearing the awe in her voice when she said, “That’s a really tall tree” was the best thing about the afternoon. I had time with her brother Sebastien too, off his game from having woken too early from a nap. We watched the birds and saw a butterfly, enjoyed the sun and mostly just sat together. I’m so glad I was raised close to nature, spending a lot of time in the woods, hiking, by the trout stream and camping with my family. It was a great gift my parents gave me, and it’s an honor to pass along a little of that experience. It’s so fantastic to see my daughter with her children, patient and funny and kind and to see them as they grow from babies – a little bit of her too, since she was nearly twelve when I came into the family. Somehow all of this coalesced for me in the vastness of space and the lucky accident of us within that vastness. Lucky, lucky human that I am to be here.