Monday, 21 April 2008

Like the first dandilion -- I'm back!

The week from hell for this year is over although this year it was actually two weeks – meetings in locations two hours distant from here, a Board Celebration which required lots of graphics to be done and at which I had to make a speech (gulp), a job with more graphics, the monthly Board to run, the Cancer Society Dessert Party, and on and on. Then I had a house guest. That kind of schedule leaves me falling-on-my-face tired and good for nothing but sitting on something soft and reading a book I have read a lot of times before. It was so hectic this time that as soon as my rump hit the chair and I picked up the book, I went to sleep. I still haven't finished my latest library book, which is a fascinating discussion of memory and which, I think, will make an interesting post. Later.

What is going up to-day is great news – it's Spring! The snow pile in front of my kitchen window that mostly blocked my view three weeks ago has dwindled to this.

The flower bed I put in last fall appeared from under the snow, green shoots poked through and burst into flower.

The daffodils under the lilac came out this afternoon.

Those of you who have had nice weather for months now, and whose kids have been running under the sprinkler, have no idea how nice the first warm days are up here in the cold, cold northland. It's been sunny and 20º C+ here for the last five or six days. In that time almost a metre of snow has melted; the streams and rivers are over their banks. The YD is back in her canoe, running rapids. The red winged blackbirds are back, and the eastern phoebes and the robins. (Our first robin arrived a few days before the melt started and sat around in the snow looking disgruntled.) Two tundra swans set down for a day in a local stream; the geese are streaming north. I can sit on the porch. Heaven has got to be a lot like this.

It's transitory, unfortunately. We figure we have maybe ten more days before the black flies arrive and in that time we want to get the lawn raked and overseeded. No chance. I did a couple of hours yesterday afternoon and have been feeling my shoulder muscles ever since. We have a lot of lawn and the husband likes it to be Nice. Since we have skunks digging up grubs, squirrels and chipmunks making holes, deer dancing about and the neighbours' dogs leaving the odd calling card, this is not easy. Not to mention the fact that there is still snow on it in places and water running across it in other places. JG got the lawn mower out yesterday and ran it up and down the laneway just to make sure it was working, a fanatic gleam in his eye.

I've just been out sitting on the porch in the dusk, listening to the last robin songs and the peepers, croakers and other small things making music in the pond. Tomorrow is Earth Day, and I will mark it by planting iris corms, but I celebrate it as often as I can. Some of the things I celebrate are summer things. We are far enough from the city that there is no light pollution. On a summer night you can lie on your back in the grass and look up at the Milky Way, a glorious weave of strands and points of light. You can watch the fireflies blinking their 'come hither' messages. Some are autumn things – the crisp leaves, the 'farewell summer' asters blooming in the most incredible places. Some are winter – the full moon shining on snow, the way the wind sculpts the snow into strange shapes, those magic mornings when every twig and wire is coated in luminous hoarfrost. But the best celebration of all is in spring when life comes back to the land.

Have a happy Earth day! Enjoy the sun or the rain, whichever you have.


  1. I'm off to rake my fall leaves in celebration of Earth Day not to mention any day that might be set aside for the worst procrastinators. I kid myself that they're easier to compost this way. Ha!

    Welcome back.

  2. glad you are back (sorry it took me nearly a week to find you back... it's busy here, too)