It was a loooooooooong winter. Followed by a yoyo spring.
They have a Misery Scale based on the COLD, SNOW FALL, and LENGTH. We must have had a real miserable winter because all three of the indicators rang the bell. The TV weather people got a lot of face time talking about Wind Chill and Winter Storm Warnings; and this year they had something new to talk about, Polar Vortex.
And then Spring tried to bust through in April, but fought a losing battle against Winter. Just about the time we got comfortable with spring, winter jumped up and bit us in the behind. One day the temperature reached 60 degrees. Two days later, the new fallen snow reached almost 6 inches.
We hit the average amount of April showers up to the last week, and then it seemed like we should be building an ark. Three days of hard rain, followed by four more days of drizzle. After the first three days, the Mississippi rose three feet in St. Paul. At home, we got 5 inches of rain in those 72 hours. We’ve always had a pond on our land; but now we have ponds all over the place.
But hey, we are prepared and use to cold and snow. Nothing like that in so many of the others parts of the country. Up here a two inch snowfall is called a dusting. In Atlanta, a two inch snowfall shut down the entire city. And then the week when the rains hit us, killer storm and tornados hit other parts of the country. All in all, our problems with the weather didn’t amount to a hill of beans compared to other parts of the country.
Everybody talks about the weather, but nobody does anything about it:
Oft repeated words wrongly attributed to Mark Twain, but were really written by Charles Dudley Warner, editor of the Hartford Chronicle. (A bit of pretentious trivia) While I can’t do anything about the weather, I can offer a different view of it, through the eyes of children. Here’s three such tales, two recent, one from way back.
The Old Hand:
I just got a lesson in horticulture handed to me by Jaycee, our 4 year old granddaughter. I looked out the window and saw that the daffodils in the field were in full bloom.
‘Come and look at all the pretty yellow daffodils, Jaycee.’ She dragged over a kitchen stool so she could see out the window. ‘Aren’t those daffodils beautiful,’ I asked?
‘Yes,’ she agreed with me, ‘But Poppa, most people call yellow flowers dandelions.’
Published – St. Paul Dispatch – BB 4/24/14
The Old Hand:
I got yet another lesson in nature study from our 4 year old granddaughter, Jaycee. I watched a white heron glide over the trees and land on the far edge of the pond.
‘Jaycee, come here and look. See over there, there’s a white heron.’
She looked and looked and finally saw it. ‘That’s a goose, Grandpa.’
‘No. It’s a big white heron.’
‘It’s a goose, Grandpa! A big white goose!’
‘Okay, it’s a big white goose – named Heron.’
She let out a great sigh. ‘Grandpa,’ she said, extending her arms, palms turned upward. ‘Gooses don’t have names.’
Published – St. Paul Dispatch – BB 5/10/14
The Old Hand:
This Easter that resembled Christmas reminded me of a long ago Easter at the end of a long, cold, snowy winter. Finally, by Easter, the snow had melted, the yellow daffodils were in bloom, and the lilacs began budding. At Easter Mass, the priest gave a sermon on Resurrection, pointing out “deadness” of winter was being replaced by the “new life” of spring. Soon, the grass would be green, flowers would bloom, the farmers would be planting crops, etc..
My youngest brother, Ray, probably about three or four at the time, stood up on the pew, and began to clap and shout ‘hurray’. The priest stopped talking. People looked at Raymond. Everyone snickered, and when the priest began to clap also, the entire congregation joined in. At the end of Mass, we were told to go and enjoy the spring resurrection. And people went out of their way to ruffle Ray’s hair and smile at him.
Now, Easter has come and gone, and we still have snow on the ground and in the forecast. But never fear, soon we will soon be mowing green grass and slapping pesky mosquitoes.
Published – St Paul Dispatch – BB 3/27/00
Some times, when things wear on me, I try to look at them through the eyes of children. It usually helps.