Sunday, 2 October 2016

A View from the Road: Spring, short but sweet

Spring sneaks up on you if you aren't watching for it and then a couple of weeks later, we've moved onto the green green green show off (summer).  You have to live in Northern Alberta through six months of cold, white, snow, dark to truly appreciate the shy return of colour to the world.  More daylight hours, but with the sun low on the horizon, give all sorts of shadows.  The black and white of winter turns to light beige, then golden, then sneaky bits of brown/grey as the plants get ready to burst into summer green.

The spring of 2016 was one of hope and worry.  The winter had been short, warmish and with little snow, so spring was incredibly dry.  The plants as well as the farmers debated whether there was enough moisture to germinate (and the province had a horrid fire season ).  Then in mid May, the rains started, growth started, snow happened....  Yes, spring is a season of hope and worry.  Here's a few pictures of what was happening along the road.

Early May, just before the rains and the Hens and Chicks as well as the tulips in the front flower bed were really wondering if they should give it a try.

Smoke to the north of the road one morning and I stopped to take a photo,
 thinking it was someone's brush fire out of control.
Turns out, it was one of the smaller fires that were being fought
 on our side of the province at the same time that the McMurray fires were burning.

A wee puddle in a field is all it took for a variety of birds to settle down for a few days before heading farther north.  Ducks, geese and some swans (I think)

Walking the drainage ditch to check out the pussy willows that had burst from the usual tight white cotton bud into lacy green tipped almost flower like things.  In all my years of enjoying the pussy willows, I'd never seen this.  I wonder if the too dry then too wet spring let this happen?

Random items decorating the fences
as I walk through the back alley to home.

And the pelicans came to visit the lake and stayed for weeks before moving on.

Wee song sparrow bursting forth.

A view from a different road (going down Brick's Hill).  When we first moved here, this lovely two story pale blue house stood in glorious splendor  in the middle of a field.  You could still see the hand carved gingerbread lace like wood that decorated the eaves.  Over the years, the house was gradually returning to the earth, fading, slumping, and then finally collapsing.  I wonder which family built this house when first homesteading and where they are living now.

Walking back to the road, I spied this bit of broken crockery.
Playing amateur archeologist, I dug it out and brought it home.

This was also the spring that the last elevator came down. Early morning, I caught it ready to be toppled.  Later that day, it was only a pile of rubble.

Views from yet another road.  I had the chance to attend a workshop in Canmore, which gave me a couple of days to catch some of the locals as well as mountains I don't usually see.

By late spring there had been enough moisture for the flowers to flower (and flower)

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