Spring This Year . . . Maybe Twice

I left Kansas City in mid-March for a two-week trip to Washington State. It was still winter in Kansas City when I left, barely any sign of green in the lawn, and only the beginnings of daffodil shoots.

Azalea & heather in Pacific Northwest

Azalea & heather in Pacific Northwest

I arrived in Seattle to cherry trees in full bloom. The azaleas had blossoms, and even the rhododendrons were budding. I saw flowering plums, magnolias, daffodils, tulips—a cacophony of color against bright green lawns and trees. It was spring.

The showy displays surprised me. After all, Seattle is farther north than Kansas City. Shouldn’t we get spring first? But a long, cold winter in the Midwest trumped latitudinal lines. The Pacific Northwest has had lots of rain and a mild winter—causing the terrible mudslide in Oso near Seattle.

It has been a winter of discontent, one disaster after another. Problems with the healthcare launch. The Ukraine. North Korea. A lost airliner. A devastating mudslide.

We wait for good news. And we wait.

I returned to Kansas City this Monday to temperatures near 80 degrees. Surely this meant spring was here. But the grass is little greener than when I left. Few trees have leafed out. The neighbor’s forsythia has only a few flowers. And rain is predicted for the rest of the week (with a possibility of snow).

Still, my magnolia tree has some blossoms.

View of my magnolia this week from my office window

View of my magnolia this week from my office window

And when I went through my posts from last year, I discovered that last spring came late as well. It wasn’t until April 15 that I posted the picture of my magnolia in full bloom.

So once again, spring will come. If I wait.

And maybe this year I will experience spring twice. Worse things could happen.

What signs of spring do you see around you?


Posted in Philosophy.


  1. I like the Magnolia blooms, our neighbor has the same type of tree. Our crabapple trees have just started to “leaf out” but the Oak is not yet ready. For me the first sign that Spring is really here are thunderstorms, just like this morning. Everything is a little greener and the hard rain has washed away much of the sand and salt in the streets leftover from the snow plows. Enjoy Spring while it lasts the heat of Summer is not far behind!
    Thanks for your entry.

  2. The blossoming of flyers from fly-by-night lawn care providers. The tantalizing smell of fertilizer in our local hardware store. The pruning of our bank account by the guy who reseeded our lawn last year. The need for green is all around us. (Insert smiley face here.)

  3. We too are enjoying temperatures in the 80’s this week, but we’ll be back to reality next week with normal temperatures in the 60’s. Until I see my first hummingbird, it’s not really spring. 🙂

  4. The squirrels are eating the white blooms on my neighbor’s bush as fast as they pop out. I should take a movie of it and post it. He really has to work at getting down to the bloom on the end of each floppy branch.

  5. Pingback: Waterfront Walks in Washington State | Story & History

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