On March 1st, the gnomes disappeared from my family room. I allowed them to stay through February because it was still winter but, in my mind at least, March should be spring. In spring, gnomes should be banished and mine were but I’m thinking it was premature. The house cats are still huddled in front of the fire in the kitchen and I curl up with a hot drink and a blanket every time I sit down to read. I am freezing when I work at the computer. My hands are like ice. The furnace turns on constantly. This is not spring!
I did see one lone daffodil spike sticking out of the soil when I got the mail yesterday. I was encouraged but oh, the wind was wicked! The sun had lured me out with nothing but a hooded sweatshirt on and I soon saw that was a mistake. The spruces were whipping back and forth and leaves skittered across the front walk. Two climbing rose tendrils grabbed me as I passed the arbor, and they followed me halfway down the stone steps, embedded in my hood.
The angle of the sun has changed. It’s setting later and that extra golden light is deceptive. It used to be dark when I finished work by 5. Now it’s still light enough to retrieve the mail at 6:15 but that doesn’t mean it’s warm. Last night, it started to snow as I was coming up from the mailbox. My mother always said that March snow doesn’t last because of the angle of the sun but that’s cold comfort!
The barn cats swarm by the kitchen door waiting for dinner. With no horses, the barn isn’t as warm as it used to be. They arrive for meals covered in hay. My cats sleep in piles, like the beasts in Where the Wild Things Are. Numbers bring comfort and protection, and promote fights over the food bowl! In this kind of weather, I have to refill their water multiple times a day because it keeps freezing. I’m longing for those summer evenings when I fed the cats on the porch and sat in a wicker chair for an hour just watching them eat and play. Then, there were always one or two on my knee, languid and furry. I could just relax, pat kitties, and smell the roses on the trellis. Now I can’t wait to go inside after patting each fluffy head. The cats can’t wait to head for the barn either before the sun has set and any remaining warmth seeps out of the day.
I’m thinking I have done the gnomes a disservice. They are just on the top shelf of the cupboard. It will only take a minute to get them out. I’m thinking, at this point, maybe March is more winter than spring and I’ve been fostering an illusion!