Empty streets transform a day.
Walk in the middle of the road if you like, zig zag freely back and forth, no need to keep close to the curb. Hear the quiet of no cars, no whir of traffic for miles, the reminder that we can slow down and take a break--though sometimes it takes an outside force to make us do it. Stop and talk to neighbors that you didn't know you had, witness the silent comings and goings of fellow footprints and pawprints, all exploring the sudden shift in your everyday space.
You really see the world for the world when it's freshly frosted with ice--the leaves and branches are more pronounced, the sounds of birds and squirrels and children's giggles echo through the trees unbarred, no urban noise. You grow aware of your cheeks, your ears, your nose, all flushed with chill. You look up at the sky and down at your feet. You tread carefully but not fearfully. You're excited to go forward, to see what's next in your path. You pay attention.
Empty streets in Advent; such an unexpected gift.