Last Tuesday, March 20, 2018 marked the official start of spring. By that day, I had already noticed the clear signs of resolution of a recent four week depression. Just prior to that, I had been telling everyone that a mood upswing was due to arrive. After all, spring mood upswings predictably started almost every year at this time. They sometimes started as early as the end of February, or at least sometime in March. This pattern finally arrived, as predicted. Thank goodness!
So far, I wouldn’t say that I’m manic to any real degree, but I’m happy, enthusiastic, motivated, and optimistic. Everything feels, smells, and looks more wonderful than before. My sense of humor is back, and there is clearly a skip to my step. A smile shows on my face, whether with people or alone.
Mood upswings are not the only things I think of that mark the beginning of spring. Trees begin to show buds, even if covered with snow. They will soon turn into beautiful leaves. The greens of my grape hyacinths show clearly above the soil. Fresh green chives are beginning to grow, and even push their way through hard white covering. They are determined and strong, just like my growing optimism.
Yes, my moods are brightening, and some plants are beginning their spring growth, but until I excitedly declare one special thing, spring is yet to truly begin. Today I can say it. Actually my husband first did…
“The grackles are back! The grackles are back!”
Yes, we saw the first grackles of the year! Those sleek iridescent black birds, with piercing eyes, have just arrived in my backyard. Just a few at first, soon to be followed by a massively huge swarm. They are highly sociable with each other, and yet slightly bullyish with other birds. You may also see them chase away squirrels, cats and even dogs. Like lions in a pride, they work together as a team to intimidate others from visiting their newly claimed food sources. From various directions they swoop like fighter jets towards the intruder(s), with long sharp beaks looking like swords. They can empty full bird feeders in as quickly a day. To some they seem like pests, but my husband and I enjoy their funny play. Just as my good humor develops and the sun shines more, the grackle entertainment eggs it on further than before. And have you ever heard the sound of the grackles? It might surprise you given their size. They don’t caw loudly like a crow, but rather have a mystical sounding song. If you’d like, you can listen to them in the video below.