I tried to think of something clever to title this, but there is nothing clever about it. I flew down yesterday to visit my daughter, Annie in Nashville. I had come down to get away, but I left behind an early spring in Michigan, unheard of and never experienced in all of my memory. Sure we have the January thaw and temps that will melt the snow and give us glimpses of the end of winter way too soon. Those 40 degree days of sunshine will fool the best of us, but we hardened Michiganders know its a mirage and that snow storms and bitter winds are still with us into March and beyond. Last winter was the winter from hell and I know of no other words for it. Bitter cold and snowstorm after bitter snowstorm through February and March left all of us thinking spring let alone summer would ever get here. It did of course. I have never known a summer that wasn't. But this was very nearly the winter that wasn't. We had minimal snow, and when we did it was the wet, heavy variety that melted soon after it had fallen. February was unusually pleasant and March came in like a lamb and almost left the same way. Two blessed weeks in mid March of above 60 degree temps. The second week we sat in the 70's and even 80's and above for over a week. It didn't cool down at night and we had to pinch ourselves that this was March.
A friend went looking for ice cream at the Whippy Dip on the 20th of March, and was irate that it wasn't open. Its March for pete sake, I wanted to tell them. But we all fell under the spell of warm springlike temps. The crocus bloomed and faded quickly in the unusual heat. The Lenten Roses followed quickly by Hyacinths and Daffodils. The Gregii tulips are out and with another few days of warm the tulips would be in fool bloom, all before the last week of March. But all good things have to come to an end and the "heat wave" that brought us an early spring ended when a front passed through bringing warm showers but upon its departure much cooler temps.
I didn't really care though as I was winging my way to Nashville on the first day of cold in Michigan for over two weeks. Here the temps were a very wonderful mid-70's by noon and everything is in blossom, the last of the tulips just fading. I heard last night Michigan had 27 degrees and frost. While the practical side of me hopes that it didn't get the peach tree blossoms which covered the tree when I left, the rest of me loved the feeling of being without a care. I am truly on vacation here. I have no schedule, no calendar to follow and no one to take care of. The kids went to work this morning and I leisurely arose and read for a blessed two hours in the sunshine. I walked Annie's neighborhood, a favorite past time of mine, and met the wife of the family who bought the lovely new house being built last spring when we were here. An added bonus they are transplants from Michigan, so we had much to share.
I look forward to an evening of plant shopping and seafood for dinner. I know I can't live like this always and will be returning to chilly Michigan, but sometimes you get just what you need when you need it. That has seemed far apart this past year, and most times it was just put one foot in front of the other and rely on the Good Lord to somehow pull you along. It has been nice to be in the land of southern hospitality where everyone is outside and likely to say, "Hey". Sometimes you have to pull the trigger and go for it, and hope that the Lord is guiding you, no matter how selfish the dream seems. I just know that I am enjoying this respite and I am wise enough and grateful enough to enjoy it while it is upon me.
We seldom get what we want, unless we are foolish enough to go after something because it is there. There is an old Stones song, "You can't always get what you want, but if you try sometime, you just might get what you need". Nashville is what I needed and I am grateful. I would miss my life if it weren't there to go back to. I sometimes think we truly vacation to make us glad to return Home...