No, I haven’t dropped off the face of the earth; I just returned from an excursion to Connecticut and Boston to visit family for the Easter holiday. The morning we left Virginia Beach at 6 A.M., it was so warm, I didn’t need more than a light sweater. All the trees had been in bloom for several weeks already. The Bradford pears had lost their coating of white blossoms and exchanged them for their spring and summer green. The dogwoods had been entertaining us with their pink petals, and even the crepe myrtles, though not flowering yet, were fully crowned with leaves. Azaleas in nearly full flower dotted the landscape on our drive to the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel.
We had just begun our crossing of the Bay when the sun began to rise. The flaming orb peeked above the horizon in breathtaking splendor, its rapid ascent catching a line of tankers, waiting their turn to cross the bridge at the tunnel points, in its dazzling rays. The Eastern Shore of Virginia, bathed in early morning light, was rich with the verdant green of spring.
As we entered Delaware, several hours later, we noticed fewer and fewer trees had any leaves. By the time we arrived in Connecticut, our first destination, the scenery looked like Virginia Beach in March. Except for daffodils, forsythia, and Bradford pears, little else was in bloom. The grey of early spring predominated. It was as if the seasonal clock had been turned back a month.
We drove to Boston on Easter Saturday. A chilling rain was falling steadily. Our children were ready for spring, though spring was not ready for them. As we huddled together in dampness, staring out at the bleakness, my brother and sister-in-law back in Virginia called to tell us it was bright and sunny and the temperature had risen to an unseasonal 94 degrees. We did not want to hear that.
Easter Sunday dawned sunny and warm. Our children were especially grateful for the change in weather. Though we had enjoyed spring for a month, they were just on the cusp of the season. We knew how they felt. The rector in the little Episcopal church in Cambridge, a church that predated the Revolutionary War, preached about the repeating cycle in the life of the church. As we sang our loud hosannas, I thought of all the voices that had rung out those same hosannas through so many other Easters. It was a glorious Sunday. We took a walk, breathed in the fresh spring air, marveled at the emerging flowers and budding trees on the Tufts campus, and felt renewed. Reliving that feeling a second time in the same season, this time experiencing it with our children, was priceless.