Mar 6, 2014

March-ing into spring

This winter has been the winter of eternal spring.  My bulbs have already bloomed and are gone and here we are going into March.  The Valentine decor has come down, and while the rest of the nation is yearning for Spring and flip-flops, I'm still yearning from some sort of winter to make Spring all that much better. 

 I remember the one Easter spent in upstate New York where we lived through two winters as very poor newlyweds.  We had been cooped up in our little place for months and I had never experienced a winter like that.  This California girl was WAY out of her league.  They're not playin' up there.  I naively thought one day in mid January that I would just make a run for the mailbox and get the mail just a few yards from my front door.  It may have been 0 degrees out, but that number (or lack of) didn't register in my visions-of-etermal-sunshine-head.  I was so unprepared for the numbing, bone-chilling cold that blasted through my frame as I sprinted for the box in short sleeves and flannel jammie pants and thin slippers, and for the next hour that it took to defrost draped over the heating vent. I don't care what was in that box. Never again guys, never again.  I remember thinking, "what's wrong with a place where you can't even flippantly decide to grab some mail without some major planning about wrapping up every square inch of exposed skin?!"  Those New Yorkers who have always lived there....well, just....well, bless them.

Anyways, I digressed.  Back to my Easter story.  I told you the above mailbox tragedy to explain that when April arrived I was itching to get out in some warmth.  I decided it should be warm enough in the first week of April to venture out for a short waterside picnic by the Hudson River.  So I made a potato salad, got a ham together, and convinced Tone that this was going to be fun.  Bwahaha, poor man. We tried it.  A brilliant sun in the sky does not necessarily make a warm day, guys.  The breeze blowing off the river was still very bitter.  I forgot to factor that in.  I think Tone was trying to be super nice, but it was me who suggested after only five minutes at the picnic table that I would like to eat in the car and VIEW the river only.  We ate our Easter dinner shivering in a car with the heater going.  I'm not even sure the view was that great because the trees weren't dumb enough yet to put out their leaves and have them frozen off.  That should have been my first sign. 

At any rate, spring that year was the sweetest spring I have ever experienced.  Here in Cali, it means the return of dead grass after a brief flash of green hills in February/March. But that year, I decided for Tone's birthday, at the end of May, that we should drive over to Cooperstown to the baseball hall of fame.  New York, just a month later, was flaunting spring. And I was able to flaunt shorts and flip flops. Glorious. It was the most idyllic drive through farm towns I have ever, ever seen.  Green, with daffodil bulbs blooming everywhere, and bushy trees for days.  

This is how my brain rolls. Jenny thinks of "ideas" and road trips and activities for the day very last minute.  This birthday one panned out perfectly, but it's no wonder my darling dear looks at me with a mixture doubt and skepticism when I scheme up an idea we could "do this week".

(It'll be fun, she said.  You'll  enjoy it, she said.)
All that to say, spring this year will not be all that sweet.  It'll be the long road to a hot summer without water.  Usually, every year at this time, I plant this dirt area in my garden with annuals.  This year, I knew that restricted watering would kill them so I planted mostly succulents and drought resistant plants and made a "toad city" with the kid's help (we're making lemonade out of dry lemons).

We all now that seasons are good for the soul.  While we want eternal "summers" of happiness, it's the winters of our life that make the turning of the seasons so much sweeter.   This year I am reminded that seasons are good for the soul.  That the tears/rain shed in one season, water the joys of the next season.
This week has had more than one rainy day in a row.  I'm not sure that we can catch up this year to the amount of rain needed for the summers here, but it was a refreshing change.  I enjoyed the cold and rainy days.  I'm not sure that I have ever said that before.  To the people who live in the Pacific Northwest, well...well, just...well, bless them.
All that being said,  flip flop weather will always and forever be my favorite.

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