Jumping Through Windows

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Back in my college days (some 10+ years ago) I lived in a small, out-dated basement apartment with 3 other guys. I’d never met a single one of them before moving in. And, to be quite honest, even after I got to know them, I kinda went out of my way to avoid spending time with them.

Don’t get me wrong, they were all pretty great guys. I certainly didn’t dis-like any of them. It’s just that, as a general rule, I’m not a very social person.

I would go home to my parents’ house almost every weekend (free laundry is the best!), and quite often, as soon as my homework was finished on any given week-night, I’d grab my backpack and take off to spend the night up in the mountains by myself — usually showing up to class the next day with grass stains on my knees, pine sap on my shoes, and smelling like a campfire. As a matter of fact, I later found out that my roommates usually referred to me as “Mountain Man Nate.”

But be that as it may, I did enjoy our little bachelor pad, or, as I liked to call it:

“The BatCave”

It was pretty much everything you’d expect from a college-kids’ apartment. There were piles of dirty dishes in the sink; textbooks strewn here, there, and everywhere; empty pizza boxes sticking out of the overflowing trash can; and usually a random episode of the TV series “24” playing somewhere in the background.

The atmosphere may not have fulfilled my longing for “peace and quiet and good, tilled earth”, but hands-down, my favorite feature of the whole apartment was the open window looking from the kitchen into the living room. My roommates liked it because you could still watch TV while eating in the kitchen, but I liked it because it was fun to jump through…

I’d usually wait until all my roommates were gone, and then I’d practice my running dives through the kitchen window. It’s weird, I know. But it was also really fun!

I also came to see it as kind of a metaphor.

I mean, life doesn’t just hand you everything you want on a silver platter. Oftentimes, there’s a lot of waiting involved. And when a window of opportunity does finally open up, there’s no knowing just how long that window is going to stay open. So… I practiced diving through the kitchen window to kinda train myself to be ready to jump when other windows opened.

Like I said, it’s super weird. But then again, when have I ever claimed to be normal?!

Did my training work?

I don’t know.

All I know is that it’s been raining almost every single day for the entire month of May, turning our garden into a weedy, muddy quagmire. There haven’t been many opportunities to get any work done.

But, as luck would have it, we had an 18-hour break in the rainclouds last weekend — just long enough for things to dry out a little bit. So I dove through that window, harvesting a bunch of spinach, lettuce, and radishes, and finally planting my carrots, green beans, and tomatoes. Sure, that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to my gardening to-do list. There’s still a lot more to get in the ground. But when I think about how the rain was already starting to pound on Lindsey and me as we finished up with the last couple tomato plants, I can’t feel too bad.

It was a narrow window, and we took full advantage of it.

Either way you look at it, we enjoyed the adventure!

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