It's rare that you can remember and pinpoint the exact moment when you learned something new as a child. Most of the early experiences of life seem to blend together like a big blurry dream. But I do remember when the realization dawned on me that January, the start of a new year, does not equal spring. We had a little cartoony calendar up on the board in kindergarten that had a little picture next to the name of the month. In September it showed leaves, probably, and in October, a pumpkin; November was most likely a turkey or a pilgrim, and December was most likely something to do with Christmas. ( Shocking, I know. Christmas references in SCHOOL?)
When I got back to school after Christmas and saw the month of January up on the calendar, I was surprised to see little snowflakes and someone skating on a frozen pond. In fact, I was shocked. My world rocked upon its foundations. I guess in the previous five years of my life, not having been exposed to the routines of education, and probably never noticing a calendar or knowing what it meant, I thought that the New Year meant the end of winter. BING! January first means instant SPRING! Right? New Year- new season! It didn't make sense to me that you had to go through three more months of the same ol', same ol' before you really got to something different and new. Weird how kids think, huh? Strange and yet understandable, I guess. WELL...my misconception seems to be not too far off the mark down here in Dixie. Yesterday it was in the 60's and the long sleeved shirt I was wearing was actually TOO WARM as I went out for a walk with Penny. The New Year has arrived, and it feels like spring is on its way! I know we will probably go back to cooler temperatures, but it's nice to have these balmy days every once in a while. I would call it a January thaw, except for the fact that nothing has frozen down here yet. Oh yeah- one morning last month there was an "ice storm"- a few miles north of us- for a few hours...Huh.
We actually had some thunderstorms in the last couple of days. Loud, flashy, and torrential. Last night someone called to make sure our house was still standing and that I was okay, because they heard that a tornado had touched down in my neighborhood in the last hour. Wow. We're not in New Hampshire anymore, Toto.
Guess what- in one week I will be in Michigan! Hurray! I will be gone for about ten days, visiting my newest nephew. I CAN'T WAIT.
Today is Alice's hearing. She will most likely be moved to another facility, so last week's visit was probably the last time I'll see her. I hope to continue to write to her.