“It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light and winter in the shade.” – Charles Dickens
Two snow days have resulted in long walks through a Narnia inspired forest as snow not seen since the blizzard of ’96 keeps on falling – our small corner of the world unrecognizable, unexpectedly draped in white. No matter which direction we faced, we were greeted with a snapshot of a typical Canadian winter that often doesn’t grace our shores – we could hear children laughing as we walked beside the lagoon and smiled as we saw older men carrying their snowboards home after some outdoor fun, we even passed a happy man on cross-country skis as we made our way over to the inner trails, eager to explore even more woodsy, wintry scenes.
Those of us revelling in an early spring had to change tack – evidence of newfound creativity could be seen in the three round snow sculptures representing our local chickadees sitting together on the icy newspaper box at the corner, bringing a smile to all who might pass by. My favourite was a chubby owl sitting on a local bench looking very Hedwig-like as if waiting for Harry Potter to appear out of the whirling snow on a rare visit to Hogsmeade.
Recently, I awoke to my first blue sunrise, the apartment infused with a cool wintry light, as bruised looking shadows fought to move beyond standard window blinds enticing me to look outside, to see the landscape enveloped in frosty hues with just a smudge of gold hinting at the sunshine to come.
This short winter month has now entered the record books as the coldest February in a part of Canada well known for its mild winters. On brisk walks, I find myself counting all the green buds I can see and dreaming of drinking cups of hot tea outside on a bench underneath a warm sun. The sounds are there, the blackbird choral group has returned to their chestnut tree one street over, their beeps and trills filling the blue sky, and before our latest snowfall, I could see starlings and crows looking for nesting sites.
For now, there are moments to collect, yoga classes down by the harbour to get lost in and books to be read at the end of day – spring will come in its own sweet time, sneaking up on us while our eyes are still dazzled by winter’s long stay.
In this second week of March with the threat of snow still a possibility, the cherry blossoms are bravely unfurling, the Canada geese are honking on nearby rooftops and all manner of birdlife have begun to pair up. As for myself, the new light moving through the apartment has me thinking of creating space (donating unread books, composting bundles of cedar and sage as well as participating in recycling events) and dusting off my collection of CD’s, it’s time to fill the air with music, welcoming spring.