I actually wished for an ice scraper.
It was cold -- cold enough to settle the air to crystal but not cold enough to kill. By mid-morning the frost had melted down to dew, and by afternoon, the day was positively balmy. All traces of ice had been lifted clean away and the sky rubbed out to a transparent opalescence. The air was so clear that the coastal mountains, ordinarily a smudged smokiness on the horizon, appeared crisply etched on the sky. I swear I could even see the trees. It was as if when the silver frost was peeled away, the earth exploded into an impossibly saturated techincolor 3-D movie with every element crisply drawn and precisely placed. Suddenly all color, even the palest pastels, swelled 10% richer, all line cut deeper and finer, all solid planes polished to a tenderness more expansive than the grandest vista. It was a day to fall in love with winter spring summer fall, with everything, with all, to collapse into the music of the earth, beating its erratic rhythm between morning frost, the warm heart of noon, and the clash of evening chill.
Tonight promises to be colder still and then rain, serious rain, is forecast. We are grateful for the rain -- it has been very dry (too dry) lately -- but bitter cold we can do without. I wonder if the plants will recover tomorrow with the same bounce as they did today. It depends, of course, on how many hours temperatures stay below freezing, how quickly the sun returns its grace. We'll just have to wait and see. Spring has already opened its mouth to sing, and I'm hoping it won't get all huffy and go away, prove itself a too timid star for such a makeshift stage. I doubt it. Spring's a hearty barefoot diva, used to temperamental costars like winter. Bare branched quince bushes are already erupting into flower and patches of narcissus are nearing the end of their bloom. Roses and clematis are coming back to leaf. Icelandic and California poppies alike are sending up multiple flower stalks, and hardy little violas have lately been looking more cheerful. . . Bring on the rain and heave the frost.