30 April 2004

Spring has sprung!

We now realize why poets have written many works in praise of Spring. In Australia, each season is typically only noted by a variation in temperature, especially if surrounded by native Australian bush. Eucalyptus (gum) trees drop leaves, sticks and branches throughout the year, typically creating a nice little tinder box around their base ready for the bush fire season.

However, here Spring is as if God has used a very bright paint-box and changed the whole landscape from almost black and white to colour! In Australia, if asked, most people would consider that Lime Green is a pretty fake colour. Never seen in the real world. But now we know this is not true. All around us, the leaves are a very bright lime green.

In Mid April we had a snowfall that coated all the trees and wires with about an inch of snow. All that landed on the ground melted, but the rest lasted until lunchtime. Lana went back to the suitcases and retrieved the cold weather clothes that had been packed and the children were outside, shaking trees to make it snow!

Dogwood blossoms - confused by this sudden snow.

One of the trees locally is the Dogwood tree. It has very pretty white flowers that are gradually replaced by leaves. There is a legend (unlikely to be true as the dogwood isn’t native to Palestine) surrounding this tree.

Of course, with Spring comes the pollen. The cars (B1 and B2) have been covered with a fine yellow powder each day. When it rains, the air is a lot clearer and all the mountains are much brighter.

We have also lost our view. Leaves have now filled all the gaps made during winter. In two weeks each tree has growth of over an inch per week. You can almost see everything growing whilst you watch. Back home, growth slowed in winter and increased in Spring. Here it stops in Winter and makes up for lost time in the first few weeks of Spring. The war between the lawn mowers and the grass is on. The grass is winning at most places. Weekly mowing is on order to make a fight of it.

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