Once in a Cold Dark Winter

Dear Reader,

It’s amazin’ what a bit o’spring can do.”

If you are among the rarest 1% of creatures out there, you did not read that above line, you sang it in your head in a cockney accent just like Mrs. Beaver did in Narnia The Musical. (Yes, there is a Narnia musical). The rest of the stanza continues as follows:

What a simple little thing like spring can do
When the snow begins to melt and the warmin’ trend is felt
Roots you thought were dead may start to sprout anew!

It is indeed amazing what a little spring-like weather can do. I’m sure that I and many other Bostonians out there delighted in the recent “heat wave” that engulfed the city. If you are from the north, a random 70-degree day in winter, while surprising and exciting, is also an expected annual occurrence. Where I live, we got a few nice days, but only on one day did the temperatures climb to a satisfying 72 degrees.

Inman Square, Cambridge, MA

The parks were crowded, and the footpaths congested. From all the activity, one may think that it was just another ordinary day. However, upon a closer inspection, you will no doubt find those who apparently missed the memo and are still wearing unzipped winter coats and carrying hats and gloves in hand. Additionally, if there were any doubt about whether the picture above is a summer scene, one quick look at the abundance of dead trees would confirm that this day in March is no more than an atmospheric fluke.

On a day like today, the weather becomes a highly anticipated event. For me, I took, not one, but two walks outside. Excited to feel the warmth on my skin, I wore a skirt without tights (scandalous!) and a light jacket. The next day was also warm, but less so, and thereafter the seasonally appropriate weather (late 30s to mid 40s and wet) swept back in.

Lechmere Canal Park, Cambridge, MA

Our eager anticipation of the weather reminds me of a short story I read in grade school. In this story, a group of students live on Venus, a planet where (in this story) the sun is only visible for one hour once in every seven years. Because of this rarity, the coming of the sun is treated like a celebration. Margot, a girl who moved to Venus from Earth, unlike the other children, actually has experienced the sun before. She describes the sun with such joy and glee that the annoyed and jealous children play a prank on Margot — they lock her away in the classroom closet, so she misses the sun! Kids (and adults, obviously) can be so cruel. 

Beautiful things should not be coveted but shared. On days like today, getting out and encouraging others to do the same can so easily help spread joy during this cold, dark, and COVID-invested winter.

Wishing you beautiful, sunny, 70-degree days 🙂

Love,

Raven

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