Since my life has been a compilation of “something’s new,” I would like to explore this topic in my very first blog post. What is “new” anyway? Isn’t it something that has already been, only seen in a new way? As children we are born as “brand new people” and yet, we are the combination of our parents’ genes, our cultural traditions, our ancestral habits and understandings… or so it seems. Someone has said that “there is nothing new under the Sun,” but I would beg to differ. EVERYTHING is ALWAYS new under the Sun… and I can prove it.
I remember my very first move to a new place. It happened at the time when my conscious understanding had just “come online” and I was seeing the world as a separate (from my parents or any adults) person because, for the first time in my life, I was exploring “new terrains” on my very own. We moved into a large industrial Siberian city but I could only venture as far as the huge five-story apartment building we lived in, its courtyard and the patch of woods and meadows, surrounding a small pond behind the building. Well that “patch” was what had caught my attention…
It was January and all the leaves were gone. The city streets were hidden under a thick layer of snow that was compressed on top of the paved walkways and piled into neat rectangular walls along the roads. It didn’t snow very often but once fallen, the snow never melted until the end of April, so there was no need to clean it completely and I remember the streets always looking very clean and white during the long winter months. Not to mention, that skating and skiing was available (for us kids who weren’t inhibited by such silly prejudices as being in someone’s way) anyplace.
As I had ventured far from home and found myself in the middle of a white, frozen field that was probably very small but to the 8-year-old me seemed like a vast kingdom of an Ice Queen, I noticed something unbelievably amazing about the snow itself. Mind you that I had just come from my grandmother’s hometown in the Northern part of Caucasus where winters were short and mild, and the snow if it ever fell was white, wet and fluffy. The Siberian snow was completely different. It was more silver in color, more sparkly and had a very new property… It could not be made into a ball! The temperature was so cold that each individual snowflake, like a tiny piece of ice, was proudly displayed in the treasured piles with its perfect individual design all intact for me to appreciate. And did I appreciate it!
After having jumped and “dived” into the snow hills and thrown the flakes all around me to my heart’s content, enjoying its silvery rustle, I finally quieted down and contemplated. I examined the many tiny ice specks, noting the infinite variations of each design, never finding a repetition no matter how hard I tried. “How is it possible?” Questioned I the never-ending imagination of the Grand Creator, observing the piles and piles of millions, trillions, gazillions of individual flakes. “Easy” I heard the Universe answer… Now, was I the first person to discover that snowflakes are all different? I doubt it. But it was the first time I discovered it, and in that moment, something new did happen- my new discovery. What I am trying to say is that our perceptions and experiences in life, like each snowflake, are all one of a kind- they are “the new thing under the Sun!”