May 6, 2009 at 12:04 PM
And when the sun finally came out, the locals shrank in despair, like demons being plucked from their dens and thrown into the day of reckoning.
Such a response as this was anything but typical. Most people would unquestioningly accept the sun's warmth, but to them, it came across as a bouquet of flowers from a wayward lover. It felt like a painful reminder of times long past. It felt like a brief tease before the next inevitable heartbreak.
At first, they mocked it. In fact, they were all taking bets on how long it would last before it went away again. For half a day, they watched it from inside the coffee shop, waiting for it to go away. When it wouldn't, they went outside and threw their hands up at it, shouting. It persisted. Eventually, they surrendered their coats and dug into their closets for sandals. What is this? Seventy degrees? Feel it--even the breeze is warm! The last day like that was what, May 2006? Do we dare try shorts?
It was almost impossible to enjoy it; they were uncomfortable even in their own skin, vampirishly bare beneath the stark daylight. In their sandals and shorts, they dodged shriveling snow patches while foraging for foul-flung frisbees in the musty leaves. For three days, they played disc golf, taking the weather like medicine. Then, on the fourth day, the ice went out on the lake and the mountain trails opened up for hiking.
Too many months had passed since the registry on top of Skyline had been signed, so up the trail they went, to stick their names in the notebook at the top of the mountain and see what could be seen on the horizon. Maybe spot a spouting volcano or two. Flush a spruce hen on the way. Take a photo, so it'll last longer. Their skin flushed pink between the snowy south facing slope and the high afternoon heat.
On the way up, the trees were still skeletal. But on the way down, tiny green buds added the first bit of color to a landscape long layered in dormant hues. The fuzzy sprouts, so tender and hopeful, moved quickly to regain their hillside while the snow-melt seeped into the steaming soil.
It was there on that mountain that they began to forget they were angry at the sun, and they stopped growling protectively under their breath like the mean old dogs they'd become.
She brings them flowers and says she's sorry, and they want to believe her, really they do.
Glad to hear spring has finally arrived there after three years. May summer fall on a weekend. Enjoy it!
Perfect story, Emily.
You have to have lived here to really understand.
By the way, it is 33 F now and too cold for me to go fishing in an open skiff.
That was beautifully written, Emily. I hope you have a sunny, happy spring.
Emily, I think that you have more than one calling! If you were to write a book, a photo-journal of a trek... sojourn....say....Alasaka.... and narrated in poem and or prose.... could have something about the violin, I believe that it would sell!!!!!
I really enjoyed that post!! Your writing is so much fun to read.
Back to lurking.
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