Neither of us likes to be the one to put the winter equipment away. Shovels, winter boots, and even snow shoes remain at the ready for weeks after the first day of spring. The ice cleats were left curled up and forgotten on the car floor for so long that I stopped seeing them.
It’s not laziness, it’s superstition based on hard experience. If we put away winter’s tools too hastily, it will return — and with a vengeance. Anyone who has witnessed a snowstorm in April knows exactly what I mean.
Having literally just killed a mosquito while typing that last sentence a few days ago, I plunged a stake in the ground and committed to spring. It seemed like the right thing to do. The spring peepers had been loudly announcing the new season for a couple of weeks, the air had softened, and our pillowcases — recently dried outside on the clothesline — filled the bedroom with the smell of fresh, sun-soaked air.
Without hesitation I dispatched my winter boots to the closet, and moved the snow shoes and shovels into the garage. I left the ice cleats in the car as an insurance policy.
Last Saturday confirmed the wisdom of my commitment. It was the kind of spring day that sets a high bar for the rest of the season: warm sun, cool air, the bluest of skies. On Monday, Paul and I posed for a photographer by the Boston waterfront, no jackets required.
And then, this morning,
April 16, 2014.
“We’ll have to bundle up today,” Paul said as he looked out the window.
“Do you think we’ll need the ice cleats?” I joked.
“I took them out of the car yesterday,” he replied.
At least we know who to blame.