Story last updated at 4/8/2009 - 11:02 am
Moving on to a second pair of Xtratufs must be some kind of milestone in a life of a Cheechako in Southeast. I've been here almost four years, tromping through the rain, snow, slush and mud, and I've finally used one round of neoprene protection. Don't worry, I'm not going to spend much time talking about Xtratufs - having my old ones on the cover last August was certainly more publicity than most boots get in a lifetime - but I'm thinking about them because it feels good to be wearing them daily again.
It definitely feels like spring when the only consideration in footwear is what will keep you dry. No more worrying about cold and ice (for the most part) - just good, wholesome rain.
I saw more people putting pleasure boats in the water this past weekend than I have all year. It could seem odd if you just look at how cloudy the skies are, since we've certainly had our share of sunnier weekends lately. But this weekend's rain wasn't winter rain. This gentle spring rain came with little wind and very calm seas.
We've had what many people would call a good winter - only about a month of very bitter cold, plenty of snow, lots of sunny days and hardly any rain. That said, it's always invigorating to have a change in weather, and for that, I'm again glad for the rain.
Along with a shift in weather, spring brings a subtle shift in how we think about the time we have. In winter, many of us have time to spare, even to kill. We find creative ways to while away the winter - with art, music, theatre, dance, reading, learning and so on.
Come summer, time suddenly becomes a precious commodity. We feel the need to capture each moment of sunshine. Suddenly, there's too much to do, too much fun to have.
Now that warm sunshine is a closer possibility, I'm enjoying the rain. Spring rain is just rejuvenating enough without being overwhelming - as the sunshine last week was to some of our vitamin-D starved skins.
Celebrations this coming week, both religious (Easter, Passover) and secular (Folk Fest), offer us opportunities to welcome the new season. But they also give us a little bit of time to stop and consider how we want to use our time in the next season.
As for me, I'm busy breaking in my new 'tufs, enjoying the smell of spring rain and the thoughts of summer adventures to come.
Katie Spielberger may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org