When most people hear the word “spring,” they think about warm sun, birds chirping, sprouting buds on the trees, flowers breaking ground and beginning to bloom. In my part of Canada—Edmonton—those joyous things come, in what I call “pretty spring.”
But first we must endure weeks of what I call “ugly spring.” The air still chills, especially when the wind blows, which is often. The temperature still goes below zero at night, and flurries are still sometimes in the forecast. Some parts of the grass are still buried under snow. Other parts are over-laid with fuzzy grey snow mold or are brown and beaten—except where they are submerged below melt water puddles. The roads and sidewalks are covered in puddles, ice, mud or gravel. No matter which of these things greets you, alone or in combination, the mess gets tracked everywhere, even into your house. There is little to cherish about ugly spring. It’s simply one more insult from nature for us to bear.
After our especially long winter in Edmonton this year, including last week’s 30+ centimetres of snow, all I can say now is this: “Pretty spring, please hurry. We have missed you. We have waited long enough for you and for your friend summer.”