Surveying the Season

For reasons of circumstance and happenstance, I’ve found myself back in Michigan for most of March. Its provided an opportunity to observe the landscape during an unfamiliar transition season. its also allowed me to survey my own internal terrain.

What a season of great transition, for the land and myself. Lying dormant, slowly lumbering back to life, budding with new growth: life is about embracing the ebbs and flows. Still its been an utterly mad March here in the Great Lakes region, in fact across most the country. Already we’ve soaring well into the 80’s for extended period of sultry heat that smashed numerous records, only to plunge back into seasonally fresh and cold, with frost nights.

Sure we humans are easily adaptable, begrudgingly digging back into the closet for those extra layers. What affect such erratic temperature swings have on the birds, bees and bugs is anyone’s guess. Armchair gardeners have lurched to action, covering all their flowering plants who’d mistakingly believed we’d flipped the calendar forward to May. Sorry, false alarm, back to winter we go. I’d hate to sound any climate change alarms based on one erratic event, but Its hard not to feel like the planet’s gone topsy turvy. Our environment is built upon some semblance of consistency and stasis. Erratic mood swings don’t bode well for the fragile web of life upon which we all rely.

Best not rock the boat too much, me thinks. As we drill our way out from the latest oil scarcity, its hard to imagine how we’re ever going to reverse such trends. Where is the will to change? Surely it would take one or two hugely traumatic events to wake people toward the changes already occurring. Our global food system is based on the free flow of merchandise, such that if Florida oranges suffer severe frost damage, California can always make up the difference. But what if things go haywire everywhere at once.

Alas its not for me to fret over such vexing issues. Better to focus on the here and now. For me its all about launching new projects and learning new software, and who knows, maybe buying a new pair of shoes. Ones less suited for wandering the planet than for digging a garden and exploring the back woods of home. Each morning I’ve woken up to the sound of birds chirping. Geese take off and land on our little pond, a temporary resting spot on their journey from winter to summer habitat. Like me they find shelter in these woods. Almost ready to continue the migration further, but not quite yet. Best soak up this brilliant burst of sunshine, nourish and grow stronger for the journey ahead.

Spring brings great promise for renewal and growth. Its a season for lightening the load, cleaning out closets and setting some priorities. With any luck, summer will bring a season of great bounty. Sure after a long and dreary winter, we all deserve such beauty. Life is good, back here in West Michigan in the offseason. You could certainly do much, much worse.


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