Vermont is greening up in the wake of a week of delicious sunshine, the days warm and nights cool. The hills softening, the trees a medley of green billowy pillows, sun-lit country roads dissolving into a canopy of dappled shade. Northern Flickers foraging for beetles in the lawn, brightly scalloped plumage like a flower in bloom, their woodpecker cousins drilling loudly on nearby trees. Bugs splattered on the windshield, and sadly, road kill on the highways. Seeds sprouting in the garden, farm stores and garden centers bursting with live inventory. Farmers starting to worry about rainfall. Brightly colored fruit trees, shrubs and wildflowers in a burst of kaleidoscopic bloom. Each day markedly more lush, tree leaves and flowers unfurling at a furious pace, as if we are in the midst of a time-lapse photography sequence set on high speed.
The recent trip to the UK quickly receding into an early spring memory. Between work commitments, a brief trip to Kendal, a market town rooted in the wool industry, located within the South Lakeland District of Cumbria. The town center a mix of ancient cobbled streets, historic stone buildings and bridges, majestic churches, museums and modern shopping. The central shopping streets pedestrianized, the roadways a maze of one-way traffic. On the outskirts, castle ruins. In town for a few necessary errands, but with extra time to detour along the river, early morning drizzle turning into hazy sunshine. And thankfully, enough time for a simple lunch at the Quaker Meeting House Cafe and a cup of tea at Farrer’s – blending tea since 1819, and still selling loose tea from the original tea tins. My outing, blessed with the kindness of strangers, a chance meeting with a lovely older woman from Dent and a brief window of good weather. The drizzle returning again by late afternoon, the rural landscape greening, pastures dotted with plump wooly sheep, oblivious to the weather.