Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Welcome Spring!

There is an interesting theory that the European Dark Ages coincided
with a bitterly cold weather pattern that created a perpetual winter.
The Anglo-Saxon Chronicles do describe
bone-chilling freezes and overcast skies that seldom cleared.
And some authors refer to a "Little Ice Age"
although they don't agree on the estimated time period for that unusual cold,
marking it over various centuries from the 1300s into the 1800s.
During that time in places accustomed to four seasons,
spring sometimes never arrived.  Regardless of when it occurred,
that kind of cold must have made for a wretched time.
We once travelled from our Shire to Quebec one year in late May.
Here, spring flowers and trees had long since finished blooming by then,
but when we arrived in Quebec
snow was still visible in shady parts of the gardens 
and the daffodils and hyacinths were only beginning to bloom.
And signs announcing the availability of fiddleheads
(nascent ferns as yet unfurled) were enthusiastically posted in grocers' windows. 
It was the one year in my life when I got to experience the arrival of Spring twice.
Last night the sun officially set on Winter

And when it rose this morning over the Bay,
we all awoke to Spring.
Considering the weather alternatives, that's cause to celebrate March 20th.
March 20th has always been a very special day for my family,
but this year, it is especially lovely! 

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