THE OFFICIAL, FARMER’S ALMANAC-SANCTIONED spring equinox might not be until 2:24 p.m. PDT Monday. But spring arrived today in the San Juan Islands.
The sky was clear, the seas were calm, the thermometer pushed 60 degrees, and Center Island’s docks were nearly full. All over my island people were outside hammering, hoeing, washing down and tidying up — doing all the celebratory puttering that comes with the end of a long winter.
I celebrated a few days early by relaunching my 1957 runabout, WeLike, on Thursday. It had sat forlornly on a trailer since November. Doing my part as a spring-inspired islander, I checked over the boat’s electrical system, added fresh fuel, drained the water strainer, ran the bilge pump and gave the boat a good scrub.
Then I buzzed over to Lopez Island yesterday for a blissful day of normal stuff you do when it’s not winter.
At Isabel’s Espresso, I sat outside on the deck and read a book while I sipped a good coffee. I stopped in at the supermarket for fresh produce. I took a sack lunch and strolled out to a favorite bench at Fisherman Bay Spit, where rogue daffodils were starting to bloom in the pasture of a long-deserted farmstead. I ducked into the public library and checked out a real book. What a delight! One gets overly reliant on Kindle when you live on a remote island.
Galley Cat, too, is reveling in the warmer days, gamboling up and down the rocky knoll. Returning inside today after an hour out inspecting the grounds, she smelled all sun-washed and fresh, like linen sheets that had dried on a clothesline.
It’s supposed to rain on Monday, the Weather Service says. But for a few days, we got a jump on the season of renewal, in all its glory. Hallelujah.