Sunny weather, at last!

Photo by Anders Jilden

Finally, a warm and sunny morning. It won’t be long before the trees will be in bloom. The bushes are already happily showing off their baby leaves which burst their buds overnight. The trees have a shade of green about them, so soon, their flowers will be popping their buds too. I noticed several dandelions already in full bloom.  

Evidently once again they had no problems getting through the winter. No doubt soon many more will be decorating the lawns and bringing a splash of yellow to all the green spaces of Calgary.

I love spring and the beauty that comes with it.  Not only beauty, but also all the scents that wafts through the air. First to bring joy and color are the various bushes and trees that adorn our city. The white blossoms of the crabapple, the deep to light pink of the ornamental trees, the May Day and Mountain Ash, each adding their own uniqueness and beauty into the mix. A little later we will have the lilacs and honeysuckles to enjoy and they too will add color and perfume the air.

Old man winter had a hard time letting go this year and hung on by the skin on his teeth. But no, spring once again gained the upper hand and pushed him kicking and screaming toward the end of the year, just where he belongs.

In some gardens I saw that tulips had emerged and were enjoying the warmth of the sun. I nodded a hello as I passed by and wished them well during their short but showy lives. Such perseverance and a determination to survive in plants has to be admired. I can not imagine how dull and boring our gardens would be without color, but I am not just thinking about flowers in our gardens, but all plants that flower everywhere.

How lovely it is to drive in the county when the canola fields are in bloom. They are a chartreuse to lime green and so bright, that they make a person what to squint when looking at a field of them. Then there is the blue beauty of the flax. Seeing them in their millions almost takes your breath away. I wonder how many bees it takes to fly into each of those flowers to pollinate them?  

I am thankful to and admire those industrious insects that busy themselves storing pollen and making sweet tasting honey. How awful it would be not to have honey for my morning toast. Last year I was in New Zealand where their bees make Manuka honey which is apparently not only tasty, but supposedly has many medicinal uses as well.

It is touted to have great antiviral and anti-inflammatory qualities. I say apparently because I could not afford to buy a jar of it. However, I did taste it in some candy, and that certainly was very tasty and soothing for my throat.

As I walked, I wondered about the beautiful lilac colored crocuses that bloom on Nose Hill Park. They probably would be gone by now. When I lived nearby, I often scampered up those steep undulating hills to get a good look at them. Even with patches of snow on the ground, those hardy little flowers pushed themselves up through their winter coats to enjoyed their short time in the sunshine.

Funny how the mind works because the memory of crocuses instantly brought another happy memory to my mind. Hill sides covered by thousands of beautiful jonquils and daffodils.

As a young girl I had the privileged of living in Switzerland for a couple of years, and as soon as the snow began to melt, we would walk into the hills just to marvel at the sight. Wordsworth wrote a wonderful poem about a hill crowded by a “host of daffodils”. I can relate to that because I too have my own recollection of hills beautifully decorated by yellow daffodils.

Just last week a friend of mine sent me an e-mail filled with photos of the Keukenhof Garden Park in Holland. Millions upon millions of tulips, daffodils and hyacinths are in full bloom just now, but there is no one to see them. How very sad that this pandemic has also stolen their glorious days in the sun. The park is usually visited by thousands of people who treasure their walk in amongst these beds, but now, no one but the breeze, bees and some lucky gardeners can ogle their extravaganza.

Maybe, perhaps, who knows? maybe in some future spring? Will I be lucky to walk those footpaths and stop to let my eyes relish and enjoy the sight? If so, I would allow myself to take deep breath and fill my lungs to capacity with the clear perfumed air.

Well, I can dream, can’t I?

Maybe it will happen, but probably not. In the meanwhile, whatever the future brings, I will be happy with what I have in Calgary. There is an avenue in Lakeview that is lined with apple trees and when they are in full bloom, they are a sight to behold.

Around our Olympic Plaza, the city always plants wonderful tulips and hangs incredible flowering pots from the lamp posts, and if that is all I am to witness, I will be just as contented.