Was the Groundhog Right?

Reflections of Nature / Friday, March 30th, 2018

The first day of spring, I woke up and snow was falling peacefully. Winter is not

A Downy Woodpecker finds some snowy suet

giving up easy this year.

I didn’t have to go out, so it’s easy to look outside and see how beautiful it was. Driving, shoveling, plowing, and cold certainly can make one weary of the season. I suppose unless you ski, skate, do some other winter sport, or just like cold and snow in general, it might seem that winter is one long season of endless drudgery.

For me, there is something so very peaceful about snow falling. I sit here at my computer looking out our big back window and watch the flakes gently float down. I just watch and sometimes I’ll get up and see what it looks like outside. The trees and shrubs catch the flakes as they fall, and with the heavy, wet snow, they droop from the weight. I have a suet feeder up, and the Downy Woodpecker’s seemed happy to find something to eat.

OK, enough of that. Once all the peaceful snow has fallen, it’s time to get back to reality. Fourteen inches had fallen and I was not quite sure where my car was. There was a big mound in the driveway, so I assumed it was under there somewhere. Digging out in spring snow isn’t easy since it is typically heavy and wet. That nice fuzzy feeling of watching it fall quickly gives way when I now have to shovel it all out of the way. Did I mention I’m a little OCD with snow shoveling? I am. I want the driveway totally clear, my car snow less and a good path to walk on. After about an hour, yes I am longing for some nice warm (not hot) weather and flowers. I will say it’s a damn good work out shoveling snow.

It’s been seven days now, and winter still wants to fade slowly away. Patches of snow are still hanging around and there is chill in the air that’s not letting up just yet. When you think about, the changing of the seasons doesn’t adhere to a date on the calendar. It’s certainly related to the changing angle of the sun and the amount of daylight. But weather patterns are more complex than that, which makes just about all seasons hang on longer than we expect. Summer can linger far into October, as does Autumn into late December and even early January. Perhaps the most fleeting season seems to be spring. We can jump from winter cold, into the spring warmth, then quickly comes the hot, long days of summer. During those hot, humid days we then long again for the cooler days of autumn.

The endless cycle of the seasons. Everyone has their “favorite” season. I’ll be honest. I don’t have a real favorite, though I do love the colors of autumn. I love the changing of the seasons. Each one brings with it new beauty. It’s there, you just have look. Peace.

All photos taken by The Bird Banding Professor. Do not copy.

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