Wednesday, April 13, 2011

And the Waters Keep Rising

Spring in this area of the country seldom inspires poetic works, but does often inspire creative and colorful use of the English language (or so I'm told). It is a season of earth tones---blues and shades of brown---and everywhere is mud, mud, mud. I happen to think it's very nice, but I am somewhat alone in that opinion.

Of course things eventually green up around here, sometime in mid-to-late May. "Spring", as it is commonly thought of in most of the country, in this area is simply a week they schedule in between the end of blizzard season and the beginning of tornado season. Until then spring remains somewhat of a mind-set and less of a reality, but it is still recognized by some of the same signs---wearing the first pair of shorts, seeing the first robin, finding the first blade of grass...seeing H20 that isn't frozen solid.

And that is one of the most ever-present signs in these parts. Of course it's no where near as bad as the parts of North Dakota to the east of us, but when a whole winter's worth of snow melts in a week or two, it makes a lot of water with not very many places to go. We've experienced that in our own small way as the snow surrounding the house has been melting. It's not coming close to the house at all, which is a blessing, but it has made getting to and from the car more of an adventure.

Things melt impressively fast, too, even though the temperatures hover not-very-far above freezing some of the time. There is hardly any snow left in the fields; only in the sheltered places, such as our little farmlet, are there any major deposits. Seemingly solid masses of snow will be small ponds the next time you look at them, but that is good news for all the intrepid waterfowl migrating north. They're happy the ponds have finally gotten big enough to stop freezing over each night. I always felt sorry for them, just standing around on the frozen surfaces every morning, waiting for the sun to melt the ice.

These pictures by our driveway were taken a day apart. I feel so special having my own private lake, or as they're known around here, "mosquito breeding facilities".

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