Spring is probably the most awaited of all seasons. Very few people long for the cold winter nights or the first leaves falling in autumn but I don't know anyone who doesn't smile at the first warm sunny day or lambs and flowers in the fields. But when does spring start?
I've been saying it's almost here and it's about here for weeks. Some might say the start of the year, the 1st January, was the start of spring, more often people say the 1st of March but today is the vernal equinox (more correctly the equilux as we mean the day closest to not the moment of equal day and night) and is when spring truly arrives for me.
From today the days will be longer than the nights and we really have escaped the darkness of winter and are rushing towards the summer months of light. And today has so far been a beautiful spring day with daffodils dancing in the warm morning sunlight and birds enjoying the feeders outside.
It's important to notice and mark the changes in season since, as much as we try to remove ourselves from the natural cycle of the year, it still has a huge effect on our lives. Some suffer from SAD during the winter months with severe mood changes, many others will react to the seasons to a lesser extent but it's hard to deny that as the days grow longer and our little patch of the world warms up again moods begin to lift and smiles are easier to find. I love watching the season change, and look forward to seeing the foods I get in my boxes reflect the warming land over the next few weeks.
In the UK we have lost many of our older spring traditions or moved them a few weeks later to Easter but other cultures around the world still celebrate the start of the season of growth. In Japan there is a national holiday and the Persian new year still corresponds to this time with a 13 day festival still celebrated by many.
Recently I've caught a few episodes of Orbit on BBC 2 which traces the Earth's journey through the year as it travels around the world. It's fascinating so have a look! It's easy to think that the seasons have little effect on our lives today; we can buy foods from anywhere at any time, we can wear T-shirts all year round (as long as we stay indoors) and we have lights so that we don't have to wake and sleep depending on when it's daylight. But the seasons still have a huge effect on many weather events and on our day-to-day lives, and I think that's a great thing. We should celebrate every season as it comes and goes and take an active part in our worlds journey, because it's truly amazing.