The folks in Pennsylvania have Punxsutawney Phil to forecast when spring is coming. According to legend, he appears on Ground Hog Day, Feb. 2, and if he sees his shadow and returns to his hole, there will be another six weeks of winter.
Here in the North Country, we don't rely on shadows. On Feb. 2 we know for certain there'll be another six, 12, and possibly 18 more weeks of winter. I know it is spring when I look out my kitchen window and see a real groundhog. "Wevertown Will" is no dummy. His arrival coincides with our neighbors planting their vegetable garden.
Last week The Millennium Chorale sang Seasons of Love by Jonathan Larson. It poses the question, "How do you measure a year in a life?" Some suggested answers are: in 525,600 minutes, in daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee, in laughter and strife? "How do you measure the life of a woman or a man?" In the truth she learned, in the times he cried, in the bridges he burned or the way that she died?
The answer Mr. Larson comes up with is that we should celebrate and remember the love; that the best measure of a life is in the many seasons of love. I admit to being an obituary reader. Obits relate the facts about birth, parents, education, career, marriage, children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. It is often necessary to read between the lines in order to see the love that nurtured those relationships throughout a lifetime.
My new favorite TV show is The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency which is set in Botswana. The heroine, Precious Ramatswe and her fianc Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni finally, after many struggles, said the words, "I love you". Often it is our actions that speak rather than our lips. A handpicked nosegay of pansies can say "I love you" quite eloquently. Springtime is a "Season of Love".