my fondest spring memories involve the flowering of the land: the bulbs whose colorful bonnets peek out of thawing ground; the bushes that explode into vibrant colors bedecking well-traveled roads still dripping with thawing snow and early showers; the whisper thin layer of golden green pollen that blankets everything and tickles my throat!
in new york, spring ment daffodils, and lilac bushes. tender bouquets of lilacs carefully clipped in the pre-dawn, wrapped in wet paper towels and tinfoil, their heady scent intoxicating still to this day.
in maryland, it was the fruit trees. entire communities outlined with tender white bartlett pears and water-color pink cherry trees, literally humming with thousands of bees frantic with their labor.
in georgia, my spring memories are entirely smothered in pine pollen. we would spend weeks hosing off our cars, our decks, our feet as we traipsed throughout the blossoming yards. the fine dust would find its way into every crevice, and we inevitably would find ourselves closed up in our houses with air conditioners full-blast, just to find a little relief from the sneezing, the itching, the watering!
in north carolina, it is the azaleas. wild and full of brambles, or carefully arranged and trimmed, highlighting designer golf courses and squishy marshland alike. sadly, they don't have a fragrance, but their colors are vibrant and muted all at once, twenty-seven shades of pinkish orangish whitish paper-thin leaves.
entire festivals are devoted to these harbingers of spring. i feel festive today as i hastily snap a photo. spring has been teasing us here for a few weeks, but today, the azaleas are blooming, and i will remember to enjoy them!