Spring Break (2011)

By , March 10, 2011

Hard on the heels of my post expressing disbelief that spring could ever come again, something has shifted, changed—broken.

Nothing dramatic has transpired. The temperatures rose briefly, but continue in the teens. The winds abated somewhat, but are now howling around 50 knots again, with warnings of 80 knot gusts. The cold, parching sunshine persists.

And yet, it all suddenly feels different. It feels like spring. Everything I’ve just described no longer feels wintry. There’s no more despair of icy grip, only harbingers of hope for warmer weather. The homestead is coming alive. We are coming alive again.

view from the window, Haines homestead March 2011

Same view, different attitude. What looked like winter, now looks like spring (Photo: Mark Zeiger).

We’re seeing it all with new eyes. We notice the first promising knuckles of rhubarb appearing on the patch mound, from which snow melts more and more daily, as if warmed from below by the stirring life within. Frozen sea spray still coats the beach rocks, but it thaws for a few hours each day, staining the rocks black, before refreezing when the sun dips behind the ridge.The topmost buds of the windbreak alder, held high in the increasing sunlight, have begun to swell.

Every few days a new species of songbird joins the small assembly of the season’s first pioneers foraging in the dooryard. We watch them avidly, recording each new arrival in our Wildlife Journal. Michelle commented today that right now, they are as exciting to watch as whales in the fjord.

Obviously, nothing has really changed except our attitude. I have to wonder if blogging about it caused that. I’ve written before about the motivational value of the blog, perhaps this is a new instance. Or, perhaps expressing my feelings helped me work through them? Confession, as they say, is good for the soul.

Whatever created the break, I’m grateful for it. Suddenly, we’re revitalized, rededicated to the work of the homestead, active participants in our own lives once again, rather than merely detached spectators, waiting on better weather.

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