First day of Spring

Today is the first day of Spring. The Vernal equinox, cuspus proventus, when the day once again overtakes the night. It is the time of year when, according to ancient lore, the great Goddess Ostara carries forth her basket of eggs, accompanied in her joyous revels by her spouse, a pagan god who takes the earthly form of a hare. And you thought the Easter Bunny was just for kids!

Speaking of which, if you grew up in New York State, the first day of Spring has great significance. Unlike certain other places I could mention, New York has actual seasons. It gets too cold here in the winter, and too hot in the summer. Of course each of these seasons has its childhood compensations. For example, Winter has sledding, iceskating, building a snowman, and all those other wondrous activities based around the fact that water gets really really interesting when it freezes.

Summer may get insanely hot and humid to the point where everything becomes disgustingly sticky and unpleasant, but Summer too has its compensations. For example, you can go swimming. And not only that, but also, um, well ok, that’s pretty much it. Swimming. Unless you are into fishing or playing baseball, and I was never into either of those two time-honored activities. Fishing because it was unfair to the fish, and playing baseball because it was unfair to my easily bruised adolescent ego. Did I mention swimming?

But just around Springtime, everything gets perfect. Leaves begin showing up on the trees, a soft and inviting breeze follows you around the whole day long, everyone starts to get all happy and relaxed, and the entire world seems to put on a smile.

On some level, even if they don’t talk about it, people know what Spring is about. Spring is about the promise of renewal, and it is the season of second chances. Sure, maybe you got everything wrong last year, screwed it all up, fell flat on your face. But this year is gonna be different. I can feel it on that breeze. This year hey, look out World!

And every year, when Spring comes around, you know you have another chance to get it right. You can feel it deep down in your bones. I don’t think you ever lose that feeling. I still have that faith in the Gods of Springtime just as strongly now as I did when I was a kid.

Although I have to admit it creeps me out just a little to think about that goddess and the Easter Bunny, um, doing it…

One thought on “First day of Spring”

  1. Where I am from, we had canoing as well as swimming (also floating down the river in a patched up old inner tube from the large tractor wheels…I know, it sounds a tad odd, but that’s what we did.)

    But summer had it’s dark side too. Hay season. To this day I retch when I smell freshly cut grass. I couldn’t count how many times I would get sun sick while chucking bails in the late august heat. Our only respite coming in the form of the black storm clouds moving fast from the horizon towards us.

    I suppose it was a worthwhile trade off: Canoing down the Niangua for backbreaking hot weather work. Hi Ho.

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