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At long last

May 16, 2011

We have had a whole of week of weather that is warm enough that I have not needed to use my space heater at night. Nor have I needed to wear a sweater during the day. I even wore short sleeves on Friday. At home, not yet, because I am on the first floor, which I hope will be to my advantage when the hot weather hits.

This is exciting times for me – I have been waiting so long for it to warm up! The only downside is that now I have some Spring Fever, so while I am really trying to focus on work – working on current projects, getting new projects going – it is SO hard when I just want to be out, and travel somewhere else, take photos, etc.

The irony is, in Ukraine, we don’t really have Spring. Well, not by the calendar anyway. I mean, Spring officially started nearly two months ago already!

I remember this happening last year, and warning my friend that it would happen again this year. Somehow, though, I was hoping I would be wrong, and that there would be some transition between cold and “hot” weather (hot in quotes because well, that weather will start in about late June). So I guess perhaps now is truly springtime here. For the next month, anyway, until Summer hits. So like I said, we don’t really have a proper Spring here…

The tulips have bloomed, and the irises are peeking out now, so if you look beyond the concrete in my concrete jungle, you see a lot of color. Especially in Dendro Park, which is (I guess) famous in Ukraine. It is a good size, has flower gardens, a restaurant, a stage, and attractions such as rides. Last Monday I was there when the tulips were in full bloom. But individual homes, businesses, etc.  also have tulips planted. I guess everyone likes to see a bit of color after a long, cold Winter.

Today I walked home (cold or not, when it is warm out here I want to be outside in it,  not trapped in a hot and stinky marshrutka). On the way I noticed that not only is the Lilac in bloom (seems a little early, but what do I know?) but there are also Magnolias in bloom right now, and walking on the sidewalk under tree after tree can get to be a heady experience. This again reminded me of living in the village during training (at this time last year) and smelling the same heady smell when I was walking home. I don’t think I ever saw a Magnolia tree until I came to Ukraine, as we certainly did not have them in Minnesota.

So here I sit, with my windows open (another milestone), listening to the students playing volleyball outside (I am scared to join them after what I did to myself the LAST time I played volleyball), getting fresh air into my rooms. I got some good news regarding work lately, and am going to Prague to visit my friend in early July. All in all, a pretty good day.

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