Thursday, March 27, 2014

Springtime after three years

   Spending the past 2.5 years in Texas has given me an acute appreciation for the parts of life in the Pacific Northwest that fell in between vacations. Spring, for instance. Texas springs were unremarkable: the manic high temps of the weather's bi-polarity inching towards unbearable, perhaps a few flowers on campus, a few more tornado warnings. (Don't even get me started on the lack of autumn.)
    I returned to the PNW braced for winter and indulged in sweaters. I also bought wooly socks, which have been a key ingredient in weathering the Polar Vortex days. Shortly after re-entry, a massive cold snap and snowstorm hit my town, dumping a foot and a half of snow on us. IT DOES NOT SNOW HERE. Or when it does, it does not stick. This was clearly a herald of the Last Days. I was unconvinced that we'd ever see summer again.
   Welp, the PNW promptly turned around and started the dramatic season-change that starts in about February here and lasts until…well...the 4th of July. In that period of time, we receive rain, sun, hail, funnel clouds, anomalous humid warmth, frogs, and again rain in varying amounts. Surprised by joy *cough* sun *cough*, I took to Twitter to express glee about the vivid green of the grass, whose brilliance I had forgotten after years spent in Texas: "Grass as bright as fresh blood!" I emoted, with unbearably pretentious poeticality. The trees burst into flower, demanding to be ogled at from the window of my passing car. The poplar trees (endlessly beloved) began to smell up the entire riverfront area of my town, which fact I eagerly pointed out to my bemused friends. The whole place conspires to distract drivers, in springtime. But really! Where else can you meander down a street lined entirely with flowering trees dripping petals into the street, while the sun pokes through smoke-cloud-style dramatic cumulus clouds to illuminate the still-falling rain?
Not my town. Just to illustrate the general atmosphere up here in the PNW.

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