Signs of change

Lamp post, Tampere 2022

The mornings are still dark, but there are subtle signs of change in the air.

I am walking on the path next to the lake. There is mild wind from the East that runs over the empty space of the frozen lake. It feels colder than it actually is. We are at -8C this morning.
The dog stops in the middle of the path and looks at a person wearing a thick red winter jacket that has stopped 20 meters in front of us. I cannot see if it is a man or a woman. S/he looks up on a tree and is pointing a smartphone up.
It is too dark to take a photo with a smartphone. Strange.

I start walking towards that person and the dog follows me, reassured.
We got closer and I hear a new sound. Something I have not heard for some time during these morning walks. There are birds singing on that tree. They are hidden in the dark but we can clearly hear them.

The woman holding the phone up (I can see now that she is a woman) is not taking photos, but actually recording the sound of the birds. She turns towards me and says: “This is nice, isn’t it?”.
It is. It seems like a sound that I had forgotten for some time.


“Yes, they sound a bit like in early spring”, I reply.
“It is,” she says, “the first sign of spring.”

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