Wednesday, March 27, 2013

YOU CALL THIS SPRING??!!


             The calendar says it's spring. The earlier sunrises and later sunsets say it's spring. The seventeen foot snowdrifts and the super cold temperatures tell me that we're still up to here in winter. Calendar be damned! When will it end!?

A long time ago, before I had to worry about adult-type stuff like insurance policies or house damage or sewer back-ups or flooded communities and everything, my largest springtime worries were about raft supplies and avoiding getting a “bootfull” of runoff slush and water in my red-toed boots. Apparently, getting a “bootfull” was a child’s equivalent of committing murder, or something, because if you ever came home with a “bootfull” you’d be getting a lickin’ or, at the very least, a heck of a tongue lashing, depending, of course, on which parent met you at the door. I know now that it wasn’t the fact of getting your pants, socks and boots soaked with ditch water that was the problem; it was that you were told to NOT get those things wet and you still went ahead and did it anyway. That was the problem!

Aw, the innocence of youth, eh? The “Fun Quotient” was everywhere and in everything from the freezing cold water, to the mud, to the slushy snow and ice everywhere. There was adventure wherever you turned. In adulthood those adventurous elements of youth turn into threats to your property.

You know, back in my growing up days in the 1960’s and ‘70’s the snowfall levels that we have experienced this year were pretty much run-of-mill as were the high spring runoff water levels. In fact, one particular year, when we were living in a little hamlet north of Moose Jaw called Marquis, we had an unusually early quick melt that had the water standing everywhere and then the temperatures dipped well-below zero which turned the whole community into one huge skating rink. Now that was just about every Canadian kid’s dream come true.

Our whole humongous school yard was one sheet of ice which came in real handy for us hockey playing fanatics as the early thaw had left the indoor rink’s ice virtually unplayable and the streets were so rutted and frozen that there was no way you could play any street hockey so we were awfully happy when the whole community turned into a giant arena. It was great! You weren’t interrupted by cars wrecking your snow-pile goal posts and you didn’t have to sneak in to the rink through the snow hatches to steal a few hours of mostly-dark indoor hockey and you could skate and skate and skate all over town without a rink caretaker screaming at you.

But that was then and this is now. I am not quite so excited to see our community turned into a complete ice rink regardless of how many children it makes happy. Funny how one’s perspective changes over time, isn’t it?

As anxious as I am to get this overly-long winter over with I am hoping that it takes its sweet time and eases into some warmer temperatures so we aren’t living the “Big Flood of 2011” all over again in 2013. Once every fifty or so years is good enough for me.

“Funny how life goes on but leaves marks on our lives; this time of reflection certainly brings the happiest memories with a dash of sadness.” Tammi Post quotes.

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