This week, thousands of Painted Lady Butterflies flew up through Los Angeles. After hatching in the desert in southeastern California, they are headed toward the great Northwest where they will make more butterflies that will migrate back to California. They fly north, they fly south. It's the Painted Lady Butterfly way.
This week, as they were flying through the city and county of Los Angeles, several of my social media mates in various parts of the city reported butterfly sightings with glee. Nobody hated on the butterflies. Everyone was like, awwww butterflies.
Wanting to get to the heart of the Painted Lady Butterfly migration, I sent my fictional reporting team to interview the butterflies. This is what they came back with:
--Outta my way, I'm flying here!
This was shouted at us by a butterfly who would not give her name since butterflies don't have names.
Since the butterflies would not stop for us, we realized that the only way to talk to them was to fly with them. It took some doing, but we did just that. Then, we quickly found a butterfly willing to go on the record.
--We fly north. We fly south. --Have you thought of flying east and west? --Why would we want to that? --A new experience? --Ptah! Coming out of the cocoon was new enough for me. --Do you fear death? --Don't know what that is. --No longer existing? --Nah, I don't fear anything except windows. Tricky tricky.
It took awhile for other butterflies to get used to our presence, but once they did, they became somewhat philosophical.
--We don't know where we're going, but we're going. We just hope there will be nice plants to eat.
--I lived too long in a cocoon. Now it is time to fly.
--There is only now, and now, we fly.
--It is not one places. It is all places.
As we left the Painted Lady Butterflies to continue their journey north, we felt uplifted. In, fact, it took us over an hour to get back on the ground. There were some treacherous wind shifts.
As we stood on the ground with our fellow humans, our gazes went skyward. If the Painted Lady Butterflies can keep flying, then so can all of us (at least metaphorically). Let us not stay stuck in one place. Let us fly forward to another place.