This was my longest Spring ever.

There have been years in my life when I’ve entirely missed Spring. I’ve been in one place while Spring was in another. Spring is my favorite time of year (with the exception of Summer), so this seemed exceptionally cruel.

This year seems to have made up for all of that.

It started in the South, of course. After a winter that seemed, as every winter must seem, endless. Come March I was working in Alabama and Florida. Flowers started blooming. Monday there would be no leaves. But by Wednesday there were buds. The following week, leaves on the trees. Great blooms of flowers in lilac trees.

In Florida, ivies started climbing the trees as soon as it was warm enough. A woodpecker couple had a baby in the small patch of forest behind the hotel. The baby spoke a lot – every morning and evening for several weeks. I kept thinking I heard it crying about the loss of habitat to the vines – to the kudzu. But I think in truth it was crying the same thing young woodpeckers always cry. Bring me food. Are you near me? It’s a beautiful day.

Then in South Carolina, home. I thought the Live Oaks in my front yard were dying. I didn’t know, had no idea, that they normally lost their leaves in the Spring. I called an urban forester from the Extension Office to look at it. The tree is sick – they cut through its roots when they put in the septic system – but the leaf loss in the Spring was normal. So I saw my first Spring in Charleston; my new home town. But I was gone, in Alabama, during the biggest storm – a hard long rain that had everyone talking about it four days later when I returned from a business trip.

Last week, I went to Denver. While it’s summer in Florida, Alabama and South Carolina, it is very much Spring in Denver. The first day was warm and the locals spent time standing outdoors, just remembering what warm feels like. The leaves on the trees were young and bright green. The second day was cold, rainy drizzle. Birds were busy, but their young had not hatched yet. And flowers – especially the blue ones along the highways. Wonderful stretches of brilliant blue among the vast expanses of green.

Three months of Spring – this makes up for so many previous years.