Sun Kind of Wonderful.
Spring on this northern coast is a long, tough haul that tears at my spirit and vexes my body, both desperate for sunlight and warmth. Inland the brown earth warms but in northern coastal latitudes such as Maine’s the vast cold ocean warms more slowly than land. Where contrasting temperatures-land versus water-are greatest-fog rolls in day after endless day. Getting through winter seems easier than slogging through March, April, May, June.
Every February I fall for my false internal dialogue telling me warmth is coming in a land where spring is (literally) painful or as someone said to me: “…non-existent. We don’t have spring in Maine.” Elsewhere, temperatures rise, flowers bloom, trees burst out in leaves, but out beside the cold ocean the gray clouds hang in clumps. There are endless days and nights of pounding surf and days of longing for sunlight on bare skin. Mysteriously, brown grass eventually turn green, flowering things bloom, trees get leaves but all of this happens without much warming. When the temperature hits 60 people in shorts and tank tops pop up like human tulips. I get it, 60 degrees means it’s summer.
Let me grumble. I wasn’t raised in this climate and I brought my memories and expectations of orchards in bloom and soft spring warmth with me when I moved here. Getting through spring’s four months, my former favorite months of the year, is anything but easy. Then again, when the swelter hits farther south, when there is barely breath to be found in the heat and humidity, I’ll be reaching for a sweatshirt as the mid-day tide rolls in, nature’s air conditioning bringing incredibly refreshing air. The ocean cools as slowly as it warms and that blessed warmth lasts late into Fall.
It’s just getting through spring that’s the hard part.