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The Smell of Spring


Well, happy first day of spring.

Here in the southern half of Oklahoma things started blooming about two weeks ago, which means I (and everyone else in the family) have been sneezing my head off and going through Kleenex boxes like they were bags of Doritos.

Of course, this being Oklahoma, the weather can’t reach an agreement with itself on what it will remain. The latter part of last week saw temperatures in the 70s, then Sunday we were plunged back into the 40s or so with hard, very cold winds blowing all day long. The last couple of days, the temperatures have been back in the high 50s and low 60s.

This coming weekend a freeze is in the forecast.

Ah, spring.

The kids are out of school all week and trying spend as much time out-of-doors as possible before they get dragged indoors for the semi-annual Cleaning of Their Rooms.

I don’t know why I bother. The rooms get cleaned, and two weeks later they’re trash pits again, never mind the fact that the kids swear they will keep the floors clean of all toys and other debris, etc.

Right.

If I mention any of this to my mother she just laughs and shakes her head.

Since we anticipate having not-so-pleasant weather the latter half of the week (and we really need to get some cleaning done around here and not just the kids’ rooms), we’ve been out for walks in the neighborhood, to the school with the kids’ bikes so they can ride around the parking lot there,* and just out and about.

So all my time outside has meant smelling antifreeze everywhere I go.

The Bradford Pear tree is the most widely planted tree in newer neighborhoods in Oklahoma City and from the time it first flowers (pretty white blossoms, yes) until the blossoms fall away leaving bright green leaves, the aroma it wafts is right up there with week-old garbage. To me, it smells of antifreeze, and old antifreeze at that. Both my son and a friend of mine have said they would prefer that to the stench of rotting fish.

OK, so breathing the acrid scent of old antifreeze for a month or so isn’t so bad.

***************

*The kids like riding their bikes on the school parking lot—more room to maneuver, and since my son passed his old bike down to his sister, she’s been wanting to ride there. The sidewalks in the neighborhood are typical sidewalks, narrow for someone riding a bike and tilted at crazy angles. The open space of an empty parking lot is much easier to navigate.

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