Season by season

Today is December first. Where did the time go? Wasn’t it New Year’s day just a few short weeks ago? Has another year almost gone by again, and so fast? I’m almost lost at how quickly one year has faded into the past, leaving me before I felt it even has begun.

Back in Canada, the seasons change, each one bringing with it a new joy and new sadness. Each season heralds a new state of mind, a new attitude.

Spring brings in a rebirth, a feeling of newness and a more lighthearted attitude. There is a bounce in our steps, and a freedom in our mindset. Everywhere we look there are traces of greens ready to burst into leaves, the animals begin to wake from their winter sleep, the birds return from the south. Life is starting again, and we feel the newness in the air like it was something we can touch. Goodbye winter, goodbye long nights and short days. Hello fresh air and sunshine.

Summer ushers in a time of movement, of outdoor fun, flowers, and late nights watching the sunset. It’s crickets and mosquitoes. It’s lilacs and fresh strawberries warm from the sun. We feel the grass on our toes and everything seems right with the world. We laugh a little louder, stay up a little later, and all around us, life is in full bloom. Our lives seem a little less stressful, a bit more colourful. There is an easiness about summer that makes it joyful to be alive.

Fall, this one is the hardest of all. This is when there is a final explosion of color, trees turn brilliant shades of yellow, orange, and red, plants give their last flowers, and animals scurry to prepare for what is ahead. Everything seems ripe, full, and exploding with life. Then one day, the leaves are gone, trees are bare, and the plants wither down until next year. We go from feeling full of wonder and joy, to feeling bleak and desolate. The last few weeks of fall are the most depressing for me. It is like losing a good friend. I know it will return, but I miss it already.

Then comes winter. That magical white blanket of snow covers the browns. Everything shines like little diamonds. The nip in the air makes our cheeks rosy and our hearts sing. Winter is a time for family, for fireplaces, for wonderful food, and for just cozying up in our favorite PJ’s, wrapping ourselves in warm blankets. It’s for hot cocoa, coffee, lazy days spent reading while the snow gently falls. It’s the magic of holidays. We feel the pull to nestle down and our hearts are as warm as our fireplace. It is probably my second favorite time of year next to early summer. The irony isn’t lost on me, how I can love two polar opposites. But that’s me, I’m a contradiction of myself!

Here in the Caribbean, the seasons don’t have these drastic changes. We have the dry season, where it barely rains and the heat of the day makes us lazy and tired. This is the time my soul cries out for the ocean. I need to feel the cool water surround me, the sand in my toes. The nights, when the sun goes down, that is when things come alive here. Street food is everywhere. Lights shimmer. The savannas are filled with children running around and burning off pent up energy. People smile, say ‘good evening’ to all they pass. It all feels like a scene from a faded photo from long ago.

Then comes the rainy season. That’s what we’re in now. It’s still just as hot, but the rain adds a certain ambiance like nothing I’ve ever known. It’s rarely a gentle rain. It is loud, strong, and has a life of it’s own. The smell is incredible. The sound of the drops on the metal roof is intoxicating. It comes suddenly, and just as suddenly, it’s gone. It reminds me of the song “Rainy Day People” by Gordon Lightfoot. I know I am absolutely a rainy day people! Rainy season makes my soul dance, and my spirit sing. I’m drawn to it, and I’ve been known to be “the crazy white woman who dances in the rain.” It sets my soul free.

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