Spring has sprung and we, in the southern states of Australia, are looking forward to some warmer weather. The best part about spring is seeing the countryside green up after a cold dry winter. The once brown, lifeless earth turns into a vista of green. Some of it grass, but most of it weeds. A great deal of it weeds, at my place anyway.
It is seeing the beautiful flowers open and turn their heads toward the sun. The bees come out from their hives and soak up the pollen, the honeyeaters drink the nectar from the flowers. All the birds are building their nests and preparing to raise a family. In some areas, the magpies are terrorising people. I have magpies but they like me, they do not bomb me.
I look down the paddock and there are two new lambs. They are jumping and running, enjoying the sunshine. Next door, a couple of young calves frolic beside the herd. The worst part of spring, for me anyway, is the topsy turvy weather. Recent events are a prime example of how fickle nature can be. One week started on a high with beautiful sunshine and no wind. The temperature around 28C. Perfect.
I was happy, I kidded myself into believing winter had gone. I mean to say, it is mid-September. I spent one Saturday planting some vegetables. I was pretty confident the frosts had gone.
Sunday night was hot. I had no fire going. It was really hot. I kicked the numerous doonas off the bed and slept with just a sheet over me, albeit a polar fleece sheet. I was still hot.
The next day I took the polar fleece sheets off and put crisp cotton ones back on. I washed the winter pyjamas and found some nice light summer ones. I dug out the summer clothes, foolishly thinking the beautiful warm burst would last until next May.
It didn’t. By Monday it was cold. I shivered through the night. I wished I had my polar fleece sheets back on. These cotton ones were cold. There was a frost in the morning. Surely not, I said to myself in disbelief! I thought about those vegetables I’d just planted.
I went out into the freezing arctic wind and looked down upon the poor plants. They looked sad. Almost translucent. Well and truly frosted. They were ruined. I uttered a few choice words to the raging freezing wind. It did not make me feel any better.
I stood gazing at my poor wilted plants. There was no way I could revive any of them. Nothing to do but dig them into the soil with a few ‘Hail Marys’ for company. I wandered inside and made a steaming hot cuppa, and thought to myself that spring really is like a menopausal woman. Hot one day, cold the next and totally unpredictable.