I live in one of the most beautiful places in America. I know many people think they live in a beautiful place, but where I live people come to visit from all over the world. We have the Cascade Mountain range, the Columbia River Gorge, the Hood River Valley with orchards and vineyards, quaint little towns, basalt cliffs, forests, deserts, wildflowers....so much natural beauty.
Check out this daily photo blog for pictures of the beautiful place where I live. Many of the photos there were taken within a twenty mile radius of my house.
There is just one big problem with our beautiful place.
The weather. The weather. The. weather.
It is so unpredictable and inconsistent. Sometimes winter is cold and snowy transforming the landscape into a Currier and Ives scene. Other times it is dark, wet, gloomy and rainy for five months. Spring can be warm, sunny and filled with blossoms and flowers and buzzing bees. Last year spring was so consistently warm that I ate my breakfast outside every morning. We planted the garden once and it grew. My legs were tan by June.
This year? Spring has been cold, wet, damp, cold, clammy and cold. I'm still wearing sweaters. Building fires in the woodstove. Two weeks ago we prepared the soil and the seed potatoes for planting but we never got them in the ground because it hasn't stopped raining. It's a good thing we didn't plant them because they would have rotted and we'd have to replant anyway. It has happened to us before. I haven't harvested one leaf of lettuce or spinach yet. What I planted last fall disappeared. What I planted last March has been creeping and unsure.
The spring flowers and lilacs have come and gone and the only way I could enjoy them was to bring a cluster into the house. There was no sitting out in the garden with my coffee this year.
This weather does not bode well for the next month even. My experience has been that if April and May are cold and rainy, so is June. Is that consistency?
Living in the Northwest, people here know what to expect and we brace ourselves for rain. But after EIGHT MONTHS of it.....people are getting grumpy! Whining and complaining about our missing spring warmth, on Facebook or in the grocery store, has become the daily mantra. "When will spring come?" is fast becoming "When will summer come?"
I know that many parts of the country experienced this last year. The midwest didn't have much of a hot summer. I remember thinking, now you know how it is here! It was a fluke in the midwest, here it happens more often then we like.
But sometimes it is warm and nice! Just to keep us hoping and staying. Just to keep it unpredictable.
After two weeks of rain with peeks of sun occasionally just to tease us, the forecast is for a dry holiday weekend. Will we be lucky enough to reach 70 degrees?- while the rest of the country is barbecuing at the beach?
This holiday weekend when you are enjoying the sunshine where you are, feel sorry for me...while surrounded by snowy mountain peaks, blooming rhododendrons and green forests... I will bundle up and grill burgers in the rain.