Wednesday, 27 April 2011

For worms, brave Percy

This afternoon, as I set out to fetch younger daughter from school, I paused on the porch to lock the door and felt a sensation on my cheeks that I haven't felt since September. The warm, wet, spongy feel of humid air. After a weeks of cold rain and temperatures around 0 degrees Celsius, it looks like this is yet another year when Hades will simply skip spring and plunge into the mugginess of an Ontarian summer. Some people blame El Niña; after reading about Krakatoa, I'm blaming Eyjafjallajökull.

With the warmer weather, Ottawans are talking to each other again, almost as if the removal of parkas was a prearranged signal that it's okay to speak to strangers.

"How's your day going?" inquires a chipper barista at the Second Cup where I take younger daughter for a pre-voice-lesson snack.
"Oh, okay," I reply.
"Is it cold out there?"
"Not at all. It's getting muggy and there's that smell..."
"Worms," she says, hitting the steamed milk. "The air is wormy."
"The sidewalks were full of 'em this morning," I agree. "I rescue worms, if I have the time."
"I missed a school bus saving worms when I was a kid," she says. (This was probably five years ago, I think to myself.) My mum couldn't believe it."

I've posted a few photos of the blink-and-you'll-miss-it Hadean spring. In Victoria, spring starts in January with the first snowdrops, then lingers through the next three months with different streets breaking into a relay race of cherry blossoms. The daffodils come in March, and the tulips come in April. The air is soft as kisses and smells like the ocean.

This morning, when my nostrils were full of the scent of worms, I fancied I saw some daffodils. It's possible; it's late April in Ottawa.

Oh, and the Resident Fan Boy informs me that we just had a tornado warning...

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