Balcony Ready for Spring
This week spring officially began, and tomorrow Daylight Savings Time returns to Germany. It’s still cold, but the days are noticeably longer. People are anxious for winter to end, and the stores and shops are filled with blooming flowers, gardening equipment, and the latest in outdoor furnishings. Like many of my neighbors, I’ve brought out the balcony furniture, filled the planter boxes with flowers, and started having my morning coffee outside. All in anticipation of spring.
Even the neighborhood crow has reappeared and started to join me for breakfast. He usually sits on the chimney across the street. I started noticing him last year. He doesn’t do much, but he does make a lot of noise. He’s there from about 6:00 AM till 6:45 AM; then he leaves, presumably for work. During the winter months, he was noticeably absent. But with the improving weather, he has returned. It’s nice having company for breakfast.
In most countries, seasons begin on the twenty-first day of the month. However, Australian seasons are the exception. Australian seasons begin on the first day of the month. For example, the start of summer is the first day of December and the start of winter is the first day of June. I was told that since Australia doesn’t have distinct seasons, why not make it easy and start the season on the first day of the month. It makes sense, but does Australia really lack seasonal change? 
When I lived in California, I was constantly told by non-natives that California had only two seasons, wet and dry. To some extent that’s true. But having lived in California most of my life, I could easily recognize the subtle seasonal variations. Whether it was the smell of the air, the quality of the light as it reflected off the ocean, or the early morning dew, I always had a keen sense of the particular season. I can’t put it into words, but California, in its own unique way, had four distinct seasons. Perhaps, it’s not unlike Australia.