Winter is such a drag. Granted, some Canadians cope with it marvelously, skiing, skating, snowshoeing, etc., but the rest of us (most people I know) just hide inside until it’s all over. Generally, the months between the end of October and the end of April, are too cold, too icy, too windy, and too damp for one to really enjoy anything out-of-doors. Certainly April, which is classified as a spring month, can produce some lovely weather: days when we are so happy to wear shoes and light jackets. But April is untrustworthy as it can whip up a snowstorm faster than you can say false hope.
But May, May is the month where hope abounds. Temperatures reach the 20 degree mark (Celsius), and, if we’re lucky, climb as high as 25. Fruit trees blossom, tulips, flox, daffodils, hyacinths and other lovely spring flowers brighten gardens everywhere. Emerald grasses and newly sprouted leaves wash the city in a halo of freshness and new life. People come out of their homes, pasty white skin poking out of t-shirts and shorts, and walk, run, cycle, and garden. Oh yes! Lots and lots of gardening. In fact, it’s almost like an obsession. People can’t wait to get their hands in the yet cool earth and they flock to the local garden centre even before the official gardening weekend of Queen Victoria’s birthday.
I tell ya! I couldn’t wait! For everything spring! I hit the ground running. Literally. I resumed the jogging I started last summer and abruptly ended as soon as the kids went back to school in September. God knows why. An extra, what will remain undisclosed, number of pounds was added to my body during the ensuing winter months. Now I basically have to start all over again. Oh well, serves me right. I did, however, discover that gardening burns more calories in an hour than walking does and is less hard on the body than running. Although I enjoy running, it doesn’t give me the sense of accomplishment that I get from gardening. The rewards of gardening are much more immediate as well and, being a true product of my instant gratification generation, this appeals to me!
I used to be an avid gardener and one would think this would remain a constant. Oddly enough, though, after having children, my interest in the garden waned to almost non-existent. Perhaps I was just too busy but one can only use that excuse for so long. No. It was more that I looked upon it as work and nothing more. I still appreciated other people’s gardens and even the fruits of my own – the ones that managed to overcome the weeds. This year, however, my feeling is completely different. I have a renewed interest and some new ideas to rejuvenate the areas that are old and a burst of energy to de-weed the areas that are overrun with the little long-rooted bastards. Who knows, maybe I never outgrew my love of playing in the mud but there’s something so satisfying about cultivating the earth and bringing beauty to one’s surroundings. Hopefully in a few weeks I’ll have a collection of photos to show you what’s growing.
So whether you’re a gardener or just thrive in the warmer weather, to all my fellow Canadians, a happy Victoria Day weekend, and to the rest of the world, enjoy life to the fullest and do whatever you love! We are finally out of hibernation and back to life!