As I write we have less than two weeks left of summer here in the northern hemisphere. Autumn officially begins on 22nd September this year and you can already feel the beginnings of change. The light is starting to mellow from the harsher sunlight of summer and the foliage on some trees is starting to change.
We count ourselves very lucky to have a pair of swifts come every year to raise a brood under our roof edge, but they have long since left to spend their winter in Africa. Their arrival in the Spring is awaited with great anticipation – will they make it this year? It is such a relief when they finally arrive and a joy to see them swooping and screaming through the air on summer evenings.
Swallows no longer seem to be attracted to our part of the village but I could not resist painting one after having seen several in the air round me as I worked one day.
They are still around but it is a sign that summer is finally over when they begin to congregate on the telegraph wires in preparation for their long flight south.
Spring is here at last! This year it was 20th March at 4.30 in the morning. This is the day when the day and the night are of equal length and is called the Vernal Equinox. This time does change very slightly which explains why I always looked forward to 21st March as the first day of Spring. That’s when it used to be!
A meteorological season is different. Spring begins on 1st March and ends on 31st May which makes it easier for forecasting and recording weather trends. However I have noticed this does seems to create at lot of confusion in the media.
Spring has seemed a long time coming but then it always does. That is what makes us appreciated it all the more. This year with the warmer winter the spring flowers seem to have shown their heads earlier than usual. There was some concern that they would all be over too soon, but not so. The garden is full of crocus, daffodils and hellebores.
The snowdrops are still bravely hanging on and the tulips just starting to form.
The colours of spring flowers are so clear and fresh they raise the spirits, even though the temperatures can still be very chilly.
” The beautiful spring came; and when Nature resumes her loveliness, the human soul is apt to revive also” – Harriet Ann Jacobs