The neighborhood where I work is an assertive one – a person cannot walk through it unknowing, for it dares to prey on the imagination. Vines leap over walls like sleek, chlorophyll-ridden animals. Stone fountains, small imitations of ancient indulgence, stand behind black gates. Flowers embrace homes in a blooming grip, their discarded petals turning the sidewalk into a slowly dying tapestry. The fragrance of growing things, of distant acres, colors the breezes.
Taking all of this into consideration, it is no wonder why I don't mind walking through this fancied countryside. I always take my time, observing the shapes and colors that surround me, varied and charming. Nature's creativity extends before me like a map, guiding me into a foray on her wit and vision.
Last week, when I traveled down this path, I saw something that I swear I had never seen before.
It was a door, closed and inscrutable, and unexpectedly blue. For some reason, it pleased me. It might have been the color: it was not garish or unprincipled; it was not an invasion of this flourishing country. It might have been the vines that surrounded the doorway, green palms facing outward as if they were introducing me to this cerulean entrance.
I wondered what was beyond it. A depthless garden, its shadows dark and twilight, lined with starry flowers? Indigo streams, lined with silver reeds that swept and glistened like a satin dess? Pebbles from the ocean, in maritime hues, tinted by fogs and watery horizons? Or landscapes of Renaissance sfumato, melting into a turquoise dusk?
I looked and wondered, until the thoughts and phantoms became unendurable. So I continued walking, leaving behind the door with its locked, azure secrets.