New Englanders are a reserved bunch. My sister-in-law down South moved to a new home at the same time I moved to where I live now. Within a week, she had five pies on her doorstep. Here, it took me three months to meet my first neighbor.
Which is why spring in New England is so important. It’s the time of year when we get a little giddy, when we throw caution to the wind, when our faith through the dark winter days is rewarded. This morning I drove past a house I’ve gone by almost every single day since September, a tiny nondescript ranch a long way from better times. But I’m not sure I’ve ever really seen it before today, when the front yard was a riot of color, brilliant sunshine yellow daffodils against the bright pink of cherry blossoms.
Someone had to plant each one of those bulbs, digging down into the hardening earth, had to imagine how the flowers would look against a tree decked in its finest. I hope the thought gave them a quiet chuckle, hope it helped them get through what seemed like an endless winter. It’s a gray day here today, but I’m carrying that image with me as a promise that spring is really here, even if there’s not much evidence yet.
Because sometimes all you can do is hope for better, more brilliant times, for something lovely to awaken from the darkness.