I am confused this weekend. On Friday, I got up very, very early in the morning so I could walk with a friend to her very, very early appointment for a “procedure” at the hospital. All went well with her, but I was zombie-like for the rest of the day. I felt like I had jet lag without the benefit of having gone anywhere different and done anything extraordinary. But, the result was that the whole day of Friday didn’t seem to even exist for me. So much so, that the next morning, when I woke up, I couldn’t remember whether it was Friday or Saturday. That confusion worried me. If I had been in the hospital, I would have flunked those tests they give you where they ask you, in a voice that seems an awful lot like shouting, “Where are you? What city are you in? What day is it? What season is it? What year is it?” Saturday morning they would have been filling their notebooks with comments about my inability to know Friday from Saturday. But, really, when you’re not going to work every day or have appointments that you do every Monday or Thursday, it’s easy to get confused, eh?
Then the confusing weather today didn’t help to clear my head. The calendar says that tomorrow if the Lusty Month of May when everything is supposed to go blissfully astray. But, on this ultimate day of April, the only things going astray, and not blissfully, are the weather and me. I don’t see that changing overnight either even though the calendar says tomorrow is May. I made the mistake of looking at the ten-day forecast where there is nothing but grey clouds and fluctuating percentages of rain and lower than normal temperatures. It is hard to feel blissful when you are trying to shed winter once and for all and find yourself — like this morning — having to dig out polar fleece and scarves and gloves and even a hat. It’s no wonder that in grey-rainy England, Arthur had to set down some serious laws about the climate and what was permitted and what was forbidden. (I guess, in a way, that is what DT is trying to do by declaring that Global Warming is Not Happening. If he makes that the law — writing it into one of his thousands of executive orders — well, then that’s what it is, eh? If Arthur could do it in Camelot, then why not him?)
But the weather is the weather and I should be used to these ups-and-downs of Toronto springs. It’s the same every year. We’re always teased by days of warm temperatures and budding flowers that have you thinking that surely there won’t be another frost. Surely I can take the geraniums out on the porch. Surely I can start buying those little plastic packs of herbs and flowers and tomatoes and bung them into their pots. And then you have a day like today where all that seems a long way off. I remember when I first came here, someone told me that your garden wasn’t safe from a frost until Victoria Day, May 25! Coming from Washington where by May 25 you’d be picking some of your crops and complaining about the heat, this was a depressing pill to swallow. But that was 23 years ago and by now you’d think I’d just accept it.
The cats are much more methodical and patient about waiting for spring. Every morning, they regally sit at the door to the porch, waiting for me to finally acknowledge their need and open it. Then, they sit just inside and gingerly sniff the day. They do not believe in spontaneous leaps into the unknown of the porch. No, they have to determine carefully if the day meets their standards of warmth and numbers of birds sitting on the wire. If it does, then they’ll go out and spend some time checking things out, intimidating the sparrows who only want to eat — and not be eaten — nibbling on chives and maybe, if the conditions are perfect, even having a nap out there. Today they took one whiff and determined that spring was not in residence. So they turned around and just went back to winter habits and curled up and under their little afghans and wisely slept away the day.
Since I have lost my ability to take afternoon naps, I’m taking a different approach. I’m going to go for a walk and admire how this cool weather is keeping the tulips blooming in gardens and be appreciative of how those grey skies form the perfect backdrop for pink-and-white magnolia blooms. And, I’m not going to worry about my Friday/Saturday confusion and just enjoy this Sunday.