Every year I’m amazed when the trees leaf out again. It’s as if Winter were eternal and I had completely forgotten how the world looked in color. Every year spring fights its way in against winter with perseverance and tenacity.
Last year I likened spring to a battlefield. But this year it occurred to me that springtime is a little like a boxing match. One guy really lays into the other for awhile and you think he’s done for. Then all of the sudden the other guy gets a second wind and goes to town punching the lights out of the first guy.
Even though we know who will eventually win, for some reason excitement arises each year when it seems like winter is winning. It seems like spring will never come and people get all panicky and complain. One day it’s warm and pleasant, the next day it’s rainy and cold. And in the very moment when we realize that we just have to let go, spring finally knocks winter out. TKO.
Here in Franconia and all over Bavaria really, we are still looking forward to the TKO. Today started out with snow. I’m not kidding.
As I have noted numerous times I’ve never been a fan of transitions or transitional seasons. Winter and summer are comfortable in their discomfort (cold and heat respectively) because at least you know what you are getting. That’s not why I love summer or winter but they certainly are reliable.
Fall and spring are much less so. They are more exciting because you never know what you are going to get. (For a girl who claims to like adventure, I realize writing this that I have found a lot of comfort in the regular rhythms that come with my love of summer and winter.)
Anyway, this year I have found myself excited and satisfied with spring. I think it could be motherhood that is causing these changes.
It was a real adjustment accepting the fact that every single day with a baby is totally different. You never really know what they are going to do and you’ll never really get to find out why they’ve done it. But now that I have gotten used to this reality, it doesn’t phase me at all that springtime has a temperament very similar to a child under the age of one.
Maybe it’s the realization that everything in life is somewhat ephemeral that has allowed me cut spring a little slack this year. And I must admit, Spring dazzles in its performance. Who else can snow, hail, rain and sunshine in one day?
Spring is nostalgia mixed with hope that feels like dejavú.
Fresh air mixed with and a little bit of green on the trees takes the winter weight off of us. It allows us to look at old things like they are new. We feel re-motivated. A few tulips, daffodils and magnolias are enough to get our imaginations running wild about all the things we can do. And best, Springtime allows us a little look back at ourselves basqued in the bright light of hope. Something about spring gives us the grace to smile about the past and the power to get started on the future.
What is interesting is that generally people we are waiting for the boxing match to end. Cursing the cold rain and waiting for those fleeting moments when the weather is cool enough for a jacket but warm enough to sit outside in the evening. That is when we think spring has finally come. But I think we are wrong here.
I think Spring is the boxing match itself. And this year I’m liking it. If we wait for the fight to end before we start enjoying ourselves, we really miss out on the fun.
Last week was a perfect example. One evening we were in the Franconian- Switzerland enjoying beer garden and eating outside in the sunshine.
On a side note, what made it fun in spite of the weather was the city wide fest celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Beer purity law.
There were a places all around the city for beer tasting and brewing. There was a kind of passport and you could get a stamp at each location. The whole thing was free and there were tons of people out inspite of the rain.
It was rainy and cold, not the weather we ordered but the company was warm and the food was delicious. Really no matter the temperature, Keller beer never tastes bad. So in closing, we here, are still in the midst of the boxing match but I know that in the end spring will prevail, winter coats and hats will go back in the closet, and for a few short weeks we will all walk a little lighter, in the fresh air while all life’s possibilities run free.