Here we are in the waning days of winter. According to the calendar, ten days of grey remain until we reach the vernal equinox, when the new season officially begins. But already, I see the miracles of spring starting to pop up all around me.
^ In the cool air of early March, these tiny daffodils are bursting forth and bringing their sunshine into the corners of my yard. I marvel at their fragile form and delicate stature as well as the irrepressible optimism that coaxes them forth at the very first hint of spring's warmth.
^ Purple and white crocus with their bright orangey-yellow stamens spring from the cold ground and show their sassy selves in my backyard. The tender blossoms fade quickly, but their remarkably cheerful exuberance dazzles my eye and helps me weather the last few days of winter's gloom.
^ These primrose have defied the odds and survived the onslaught of evil slugs for more springs than I can count. While some of the petals are marked by those hungry creatures' feeding sessions, I'm amazed that the precious purple-y pink and yellow faces continue to flourish.
^ Wait, what's this? A large, red, lounging beast hardly seems a miraculous harbinger of spring.
But a short story may change your mind.
Last weekend, we Americans moved our clocks ahead by one hour to begin another season of daylight savings time.
Which means that in the snap of a finger, our clocks fell out of sync with the sun. Given the sun's position at any time of day, suddenly our clocks read one hour later than before the shift. Which is very confusing to anyone who keeps track of time by looking at the sun.
Enter Ranger, my noble pup, who has an uncanny knack for knowing when the time for our daily walk is approaching. According to my human whims, I like to leave the house about 4:20 p.m., and Ranger has proven himself to be quite adept at judging when the time is growing near.
Surely, though, this time change would throw him off. There's no way a dog can possibly grasp the idea of turning the clocks ahead, and I gleefully anticipated the fun of surprising him with his leash in my hand, a full hour ahead of the time when he would expect to go.
Well. The joke was on me.
Because at exactly 4:16 p.m. this afternoon, Ranger roused himself from his comfortable spot on the kitchen rug and sounded the pre-walk alarm bells.
How could he possibly have known it was time to go?????
I have no explanation. I can only take a deep breath, shake my head, and ponder anew these inexplicable miracles of spring.
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For more stories about late winter and early spring, try these: