And they say that I have spring fever, though it isn’t even spring

The Cusp of Spring where one's fancy turns to love while the other is unwilling to to relinquish a long winter's nap


“It’s spring fever.  That is what the name of it is.  And when you’ve got it,  you want – oh, you don’t quite know what it is you do want,  but it just fairly  makes your heart ache, you want it so!”  ~Mark Twain 


 I catch a ration of you-know-what every year when I say that fall starts on July 4th  People say I’m negative when I point out the first turned birch leaf right about that time.  But that is not the case.  I am the eternal, vernal optimist.  As Ground Hog Day approaches and without regard to what the rodent has to say about it, I start noticing the first signs of spring. They are out there, you know,

Buds on Unknown Tree Phillips Andover

 even now while I am dealing with the foot of snow we got last night on top of last week’s 27” and the pending 2-3 feet being predicted for next Wednesday. You just have to know where to look.  My friend Kelly – she saw spring last night on the pub table after tennis when I passed out a few bags of Cadbury Mini Eggs.  “They’re out all ready, I can’t believe it”.  Mini eggs aren’t the harbinger of spring for me that they are for Kelly.  

Buds Outside Stop & Shop

I think that the problem most people have in seeing the earliest  signs of spring is that they are too preoccupied with the elephant in the room, all those overdone signs of winter. 

I receive most of my subtle cues from nature.  There are buds on the trees, my friends, if you peer through the enveloping ice; my black rabbit has gone berserk, cavorting through my bedsprings and dancing at all hours of the night, and my favorite sign – it was still light out at 5pm tonight. I had to double check my watch. There was even a hint of light up until 6pm on the horizon but that could have been halogen light and moon glow reflecting off the never ending snow.  Even my writing is sounding more flowery though I sit here encumbered by a down vest and polar fleece knee highs.  Soon, typically the first week of February, we will see the returning robins.  Last year they came back a bit early, and if they’re in their right minds they’d stay south a bit longer this year, but I imagine they won’t be able to resist the allure of the wakening sap in the maples or the probing shoots beneath earth and snow.  Even my husband senses spring; after a winter of roses and mums, he brought home tulips the other day. Spring is nudging its way back. 

If I wanted to take my cues from the corporate world,  those are available too. 

Patio Furniture & Coolers - If they're selling summer, it must at least be spring, right?

 Just got my W-2 and well that’s not needed until April 15 (definitely spring).  And the Super Stop & Shop in Newburyport lived up to its name with sun umbrellas (you remember what sun is don’t you) and patio furniture, and herb plants to start indoors, and the Cadbury Mini Eggs.

Winter may appear to be tightening its grip on New England with all its bluster, but that’s only because it too senses that its days are numbered and the barely audible voice of spring is gathering force.

DON’T READ ANOTHER WORD IF YOU’RE SUPERSTITIOUS:  The superstition my family attributes to robins is that when you see your first robin – if and only if it is on the wing, you will have a lucky year.  If you see your first robin on the ground…well…sorry for you.  In a couple of weeks the cryptic calls will be  relayed quickly – “they’re baaack.”  So starting mid January I steadfastly refuse to look down resulting in many an unpursued claim of ice induced slip and fall.

 © 2011 Alison Colby-Campbell

10 thoughts on “And they say that I have spring fever, though it isn’t even spring”

  1. Still reading – here’s a treat Johnny Mathis singing “It Might as Well Be Spring” from Rodgers & Hammersein’s musical “State Fair”. My subject quote was based on a line from the song.


  2. what a great blog! My first sign of spring is the air. One morning I will go to warm up the car and the air will be just different bringing on the same sounds in a richer way…. As for fall, people say I’m nuts in July when I see that first leaf. Thanks for sharing !!!!!


  3. Thanks Nancy – I was well into adulthood when I realized that though I said summer was my favorite season, it is really spring, and especially those frilly clustered spring green new leaves before they start unfurling. It’s a treat every day to see what’s grown. And I am so glad to hear someone else sees the leaf in July!


  4. In Hilton Head, it stays light later (by an hour.) So last month felt like spring to me. I love being back in the snow, but miss the light. Wouldn’t you say the population suffering from Seasonal Affective Disorder outweighs the agrarians of society? And if so, why not ‘spring forward’ ?


  5. The NASCAR season starts in a couple weeks. That’s always my benchmark. Followed in short order by the Super Bowl (designating as it does the end of football season, which I’m sorry to see to go, but it is a fall winter sport), the start of spring training, the final four, and ultimately the season opener. After that spring is like a done deal already.


  6. Love that song, and love the quotes you chose to go with your blog. So glad you are indeed seeing the signs; I appreciate the accompanying “proof” in photographs! Since I associate Spring with Easter, and Easter is so late this year, I was definitely feeling that I had a long way to go… Got a bit more spring in step now!


  7. Saw another sign today….2 male turkeys struttin their ample stuff for the ladies and doing their best chick impressing dance maneuvers.
    Betty keep your chin up spring does exist if only in our hearts – nah it’s really coming I promise
    Rambo – never equated sports with spring, but I did hear of something called spring training


  8. Another sign – WCVB news/weather just stated that this is the annual date where temps start to get regularly warmer. Considering the rest of their forecast inclusing temps for tomrrow, I’d say their credibility could be doubted, but I am sticking with them anyway – it’s 2 degrees in Haverhill right now


  9. Saw my first robin yesterday (top branches of the tree outide my door). Feb 6 – almost missed the cut-off date for my observation that I see them the first week in Feb every year. Welcome back!


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