Vernal Equinox Finally

I stepped outside this 4AM, and it was quite apparent that the fat lady has finally wandered onto thedanger stage. Normally, it is only owls and coyotes that greet me at that early hour. And you may be wondering what the heck I am doing outside at that time of day. Out here on the lone prairie, life come at you fast, and you’ve got to meet it head on. It’s the early bird gets the worm as we all know. I prefer eggs and whatever wild hair the Mrs has dreamed up for the first meal of the day. But first, I must taste the early morning air.

One of the things that irritates me about Kansas is its predilection for night time storms. We have lived in many places, and this place, more than all the others, loves whoopin’ it up in the dark. Something about it being near the center of the continent, cold from the northwest meets warmth and moisture from the southeast and a dry line from the southwest gets the party started. I am not sure who in that bunch loves the night shift, but most of the big, booming, hail and frog inducing storms happen in the dark.

We have a weather radio on the bed headboard; you don’t want to be in the land of nod when Mr Tornado comes knocking. The dang weather man in the radio goes off with great regularity this time of year. Last night, I twice heard portents of DOOM shouted by the weather man. And DOOM we got.

It’s been dry this year, very dry. The winter wheat was starting to yellow and had not yet started heading out. They harvest in June around here and I have heard mutterings of “No Harvest” from several farmers. The last couple of days have finally given us some rain. The total as of yesterday evening was 1 inch. Nothing to write home about. We fixed that around 1AM, with lots of hail, lightening and house shaking booms. It eventually petered out and we got some sleep.

I was eager to see what kind of damage the storm had brought. We had just planted tomatoes, next to the house, and our strawberries were in overdrive with lots of flowers. With the amount of hail I heard, I was expecting everything to be flattened. Amazingly, no damage and 2 whole inches of rain.

Spring has really been limping into town this year. It got warm early, then cool, then warm again. The fat ladygeese left, buzzards showed up, but then it snowed and the whole thing never really amounted to the official Nod. You know, like Moses, standing on the Mount, with all the commandments in his hands. He looked out over his people and gave them the Nod. And then they knew, yup, it was 40 years in the desert. We got our Nod this morning. Way late, we thought maybe they were channeling their inner George Jones. I stepped outside and got the Nod.

Spring Peepers. They were not showing until we got enough rain to make them want to crawl out of the mud of our lagoon, our septic lagoon. Belovedly known to us as our “Turdle Pond.” Stinky little peepers, singing their muddy little hearts out. Bucolic, ain’t it.