"She refused to be bored, chiefly because she wasn't boring." Zelda Fitzgerald

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hanging On To Plums

Skunk CabbageImage by pchgorman via Flickr

It is skunk cabbage season. And now that we don't live right next to a wetland I have to seek out my skunk cabbage experiences. It is the very first of the spring flowers...it beats out the crocus and the snowdrop and every daffodil in town, literally melting the snow and ice away with the sheer force of its will, making a hole in the chill and bringing blossoms to a snowbank. I will have to take a little expedition to find some soon.

I found some crocus the other day, without even trying! Look at that lawn! It is colder this spring than it was last year at this time (blogging helps you keep track of these things) so it hardly feels like time to look for blossoms. I am still immobilized half the morning by the chill and donning sweaters with impunity. But, there they were, a light frosting of lilac over the grass...all the same. Pardon the poor photograph, such faithful small friends were begging to have their photo included even if it wasn't as clear as one might have hoped.

I do hope that it warms up soon...I could go for a good 60 degree day with beams of sunshine. I am sort of sick of toasting my mitts on mugs of tea although it still seems like the way to survive. I hope we get some pools of sunshine on the sunroom floor sometime soon, the kind a sleek kitty would curl up in for the rest of the afternoon. You know....that is, if we had a sleep kitty.

And the sap is running! One virtue to the chill weather. I am sure the tree-tapping crowd is glad that it is staying cool enough to keep the run going. And I do like my supply of local syrup to be deep so I even benefit directly in a fringe sort of way. We saw sap buckets on the trees at the farms we visited yesterday  when we went on a milk/egg run on our naptime drive. Small signs of progress. Nice to see those.

And then there are the plums. This isn't terribly local but it makes me happy. Every year, these pointed tipped plums come tumbling in from Chile. They come in fire colors, predominately yellow but hints of gold and crimson and hot orange, especially emanating from the tip.  They ripen beautifully on the counter-top and unlike most any stone-fruit this time of year, they actually gush juice when bitten into. I discovered them a couple of years ago and look forward to late winter every year when I know they'll appear again in a small basket at my local Whole Foods. This year I found out that they are called lemon plums. So lovely to know the names of things you love. I'll take every little gift I can to tide me over. Drip on, sweet plums, drip on...you gotta get me through till April! (Note to self: Must go get some more this weekend...we're running low for some strange reason!)

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