On Winter


162rusty_springI get it, now. I understand the allure of the four seasons as experienced in the temperate zone.

Over the years, we’ve heard a lot of people say they couldn’t live in the tropics because they would miss the seasons. “We have seasons!” we’d say, defensively, but they would just smile knowingly. Obviously, we didn’t “get it.”

And then, this week, I got a taste of ‘it’. The temperatures rose significantly above freezing and my mood changed from “okay” to “euphoric.” I was a giddy as a schoolgirl! It seemed like all the birds in the world were singing at once! I took big gulps of the sweetened air and for the first time in months, I could smell the earth.

Finally, the sun was staying out long enough to loosen things up, and despite the fact that nothing had turned green yet, I had hope. Life was returning to the landscape –the sun warmed my skin and I felt the earth breathe a great sigh of relief.

I imagine this is a lot like the sensation one gets when they stop hitting their head against the wall. And I guess I still don’t really ‘get it’ because I wonder why anyone would choose to suffer through the dead of winter to get to spring when they could live closer to the equator and have spring, summer and fall without the winter?

By Camille Armantrout

Camille lives with her soul mate Bob in the back woods of central North Carolina where she hikes, gardens, cooks, and writes.