I got this note yesterday, the Saturday before Easter. It was nestled inside a ceramic decorated Easter Egg that had been part of my collection in year’s past. Last year this same egg contained the final, you-followed-all-the clues present from the Bunny at the annual Egg Hunt in the front yard for my friend and neighbour Finn.
I had been doing these hunts for him almost every year since he learned to walk. It was easy in the younger days. A whistle or a piece of candy or even nothing at all inside the egg was all he needed. The excitement of the hunt was what mattered. It always took place in the tiny front yard in front of 52 Major. There weren’t a lot of hiding places but I managed to nestle those eggs here and there so as the boy grew, so did my imagination and cleverness in the art of Easter Egg Hunting.
One year, I discovered, well, actually his dad told me, that Finn was in the upstairs bedroom spying on me and where I was headed with those red-blue-purple-green-yellow plastic eggs. It didn’t matter because when I gave the signal, he still came out of his house next door with the same enthusiasm and anticipation that he did every year peaking-or-no peaking.
But, as he got older, and so did I, the hunts became more challenging and a lot more time was required to make them interesting enough for a growing boy. They had to become more like treasure hunts than just plastic eggs with chocolates inside.
One year, when I knew from our early morning talks across the balcony, that he was really into Super Heroes. I researched and Googled and cut out Superman and Spiderman and Wonder Woman and the Great Hulk and all the other guys and coloured their black-and-white outfits with the proper colours. Why do it, if it’s not authentic, eh? Every clue hid a hint to who the next Super Hero would be and where was his/her hiding place. It took hours to do but worth it even though every hero was discovered in ten minutes or less.
We decided that when he turned 10 that he would do the hunt and I would be the huntress. But, things change and this year of upheaval kept my mind on other things and not devising a hunt for my dear friend next door. And, truth be, I don’t know what he’s doing or thinking or excited about these days. I think that happens as kids get older and their peripheral fan clubs fade into the background. But, hey, he still calls out, “Hi, Annie.” when he sees me on the street.
Life’s changing for me and for him and for all the folks I know. We come in and out of each other’s spheres but, I believe, as we fade out, we still stay nestled, like those chocolates in the eggs, in each other’s hearts.
A Blessed and Happy Easter and Passover to All