The Star-News


With spring in the air comes a spring in your step

Fri, Mar 26 2010 03:54 PM Posted By: Richard Pena

Last Saturday, March 20, we observed the first day of spring.

The tired old sun, after a six-month sojourn in the nether reaches of this equally tired old world, has started its trek north.

In its journey to our region we eagerly take solace in the promises that old sol brings to us, a rejuvenation, so to speak, an awakening to some of those things that we have been missing.

There are many of us out there who anticipate this season. We recall it from our youth when we eagerly awaited it like a Christmas in March, or April at the latest-the incomparable season.

The Spanish have the perfect name for it. La Primavera they call it, a term that may have a multitude of meanings.

For starters we might say that it is a beginning, a genesis, an expectation of things to come. No longer will we have to fire up those little space heaters scattered about the premises that took the chill out of the morning air.

The faithful sweaters that warmed our weary bones can once more take their rightful place in drawers or closets, there to stay in retirement until the first frost, hopefully, not for six months.

The decorative shawls and coverlets that warms us through episodes of Andy Griffith and the Mentalist can, once more, adorn the back of the Lazyboy and look pretty for anyone venturing into the house. Spring is in the air and it couldn't have come any sooner for us.

To recall what the open spaces look like at this time of year I took a little time-out from this treatise and went for a drive out to the Otay Lakes. The county park, in this area, is the last bastion of back country that we have left near our home.

In the 60 or so years that we have been coming to this area the park has changed very little.

It is still as pleasant and pristine as it was back in the days when friends and I used to rent boats and fish for bluegill and crappie.

Oh, there have been some improvements to the amenities but not much. The north end of the park, you might recall, is sheltered by a large stand of eucalyptus trees with the lake beyond. I found some space between the trees to take a few photographs that will probably join others somewhere in the files.

 Although it was a pleasant and sunny day there was some haze in the distance, hopefully, not a harbinger of an early June gloom.

I found a spot that gave me a good view of Mother Miguel, the mountain that sits to the south of Mt. Miguel itself. I thought I saw some vestiges of mustard in the meadows, but it might be a bit soon for them. Before too many days pass we will see the mountainsides covered with the bright, yellow blooms that have been around for more than 200 years.

The story is told how some of the soldiers, who first accompanied Father Serra to our area in 1769, planted the seeds of this flower so they could find their way back to their homeland. The flowers remained, and, we suspect, so did the soldiers when they discovered they were not coming into such a forbidden land.

Back home we can see the beginning of leaves to those deciduous trees that we have on our half acre. They have been bare of any growth the past few months and are just now getting their spring ensemble in place.

Around the neighborhood, both in Bonita and in Chula Vista, we see where the acacia are in bright bloom. The flowering peach-those with white blossoms-have almost fully lost their blossoms. The first wind storm takes care of them. In that respect they are similar to the capricious cherry trees in the nation's capital. They, too, do not stay around very long. A little later in the spring we will see the darling-and also the bane- of the property owner, the jacaranda trees. Their bright blue foliage enlivens any yard, and, we might add, any sidewalk.

So, if one is sitting around some day, looking for something to do we strongly recommend a short drive out to the back country. Nature is good to us in the spring time.

 


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