03.28.08

March Madness

Posted in Monthly at 10:02 am by Pasha

Last year at this time I laughed at my acquaintances in the more northern States. While they were battling a never-ending winter and digging out their cars in March, I was frolicking on a black sand beach on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica.

Oh, how it all has changed. Yesterday marked my partner’s 28th birthday. For the first time in all his years, there was snow falling from the sky on that day. It was the rainy kind of big wet flakes, but it was snow none-the-less. With the blinds drawn and the cold shut out, we celebrated inside as we hadn’t done in years.

In hopes that today’s bright sunshine means that this winter is nearly over, it only seems appropriate to reflect on living in four to five months of cold, with several months of tolerable and three months of warm thrown in. There is definitely something to be said for 70s in March, as the warming trend is farther down south. I would like at least a March teaser, but the weather channel has threatened temperatures that do not reach above 60 for the entire month. I almost makes summer feel hopeless.

As I thought back to my childhood and 19 years spent in Western New York, I remembered that it never was nice enough to wear a t-shit outside until almost the end of the school year. I pictured the lion head I made from orange and yellow construction paper and the tulips cut from green and pink—the end of March craft that signified that it wasn’t until April showers came that May flowers bloomed. Then I knew, Chicago, just like Buffalo, doesn’t really shake off the final frost until around June. That leaves Midwesterners with two full months to go. I just hope I enjoy being in the soggy spring as much as I did hibernating in the winter freeze.

I am looking forward to my spring projects: painting the porch, revisiting warmer weather clothes, pulling out my bicycle, and storing knee-high boots until next December. Most of all though, I am excited to leave the house more. A writer is not as inspired when brick walls surround her and it is too cold for even a quick jog.

More than anything I am excited for a ritual that can come only when the weather is above 50 before 8 a.m. I can’t wait to eat breakfast on the front porch and watch the world awaken around me. It reminds me of being a little girl and taking my cereal onto the front porch where I would dream about the world around me. I can almost taste the day’s tiny wild strawberries, a true treasure in random fields. Or elderberries, lifted by an entire branch and portable beyond forts and forests. Or my absolute favorite, stumbling upon an entire thicket of wild raspberries and blackberries, and refusing to leave until only thorns remain.