Thursday, April 23, 2009

Spring explosion

The mountain has reached that point in the spring where the greenery has exploded. Of course, the unseasonably warm temperatures that neared 90 degrees over the past two days had a lot to do with that.

Even early last week (or mid-week when I took this photo) the mountain was stuck in early spring, with just a little greenery here and there. Today, my view of the mountain to the west is disappearing as the greenery thickens. Many of the summer’s bird residents are also returning. On Friday evening I heard the first wood thrush song, and that was distant enough I had to listen carefully to make sure I really did hear it. By Saturday morning, the wood thrush were outside my front door, singing their lovely song throughout the woods.

I’ve also seen a few warblers—butterbutts (yellow-rumped warblers for those who insist on proper names) and black-and-white warblers. Likely, there were more species, but it’s not always easy to get binoculars on those little devils, and I have poor hearing in the range where they sing, so I can’t readily identify them that way.

So spring is now fully arrived. Only the song of the pewees, the last of the summer residents, is yet missing from the dawn chorus. The chorus itself is not yet as loud as it will be in another week or so. The summer residents are here, though not yet in their full numbers.

I am ever surprised, even after living through so many season changes, at how much a change the seasons really bring. Spring really is like living in a different place from winter or fall or even summer. Perhaps the changes are less pronounced to those who live in cities. Surrounded by the forest, as I am, the seasons are so profoundly different from each other that sometimes it feels as though I am living in an entirely different place from one to the next. It’s like I have four different living places or that I live in four different states throughout the year. It’s a bit of a variation on "take a trip, never leave the farm." In my case, I never leave the cabin, but you get the idea.


The-Grizzled-But-Still-Incorrigible-Scribe-Himself! said...

Spring has really sprung here, too. And the most visual of it in only the last few days.

I love seasons—the wonderful, complete change, each so different than the one before. My daughter is likely going to be moving to Florida in the next few months, and she keeps badgering me to move down there with her and her husband. I like the sub-tropics to visit, but I'm not all that thrilled with hot weather (summer is my least favorite of the seasons) and I can't imaging making the round of the year without the comfort and newness every few months of a different season.

I agree with you that when you live in the country, where nature is more than just a weedy back-alley lot, you live within the seasons, conscious daily of their change and impact. How anyone could ever exchange all that for a monotone urban existence is one of the real mysteries.

Carolyn H said...

Griz: I know i'm not a sub-tropical person. If moved anyplace, it would be north, I think. Call me spoiled, but I like living where there are four distinct seasons. If I lived somewhere with only one, I get bored quickly. Plus, how would I keep track of the years passing, if the seasons didn't. Nope, not for me.

Carolyn H.