The weather in Vancouver is uncharacteristically gorgeous right now. I hope that I am not jinxing it by writing about it here (or even thinking it!), but I can’t help it. I am not a winter girl. In fact, the day that we turn our clocks backward in late autumn, when everyone else I know is cheering for an extra hour of sleep – I cry a little, then drag out the calender to start marking off with big red “X’s” the days of dismal winter that must be endured until Spring arrives. I’m not trying to be super over-dramatic here, but I always get a pretty hefty case of seasonal affective disorder every year when the days turn dark. Living on the West Coast, though beautiful and lush and incredibly green and temperate, it really doesn’t give us Vancouverites much light in the Winter. But this year seems different… warmer. Brighter. Springy-er.
Lately it’s been bust-out-the-light-jacket weather. I can only assume that this has to do with the fact that we are hosting the 2010 Winter Olympics in 3 weeks. This makes me secretly smile a little on the inside, because although this is an exciting opportunity for a city, it simultaneously creates a lot of chaos and disruption and cost for those who regularly call Vancouver home. But that is an entry for another day. Currently there is hardly any snow on the normally white covered mountains… funny how the universe is, sometimes.
Today I decided to go on an adventure to Home Depot. I love hardware stores. There is a particular smell about them that makes me feel rather more handy and helpful when I walk through the electric doors. Like cedar and drill bits and sweaty domestic improvement. I like it. I went today to check out the plant section, because I have managed to kill about 1/3 of all my plants this winter, and needed to restock the troops. My problem is I love them to death. Mostly the orchids – who try as I might to ignore them like I’m supposed to, I can’t help but stroke their tiny blossoms adoringly whenever I walk into the room (they are smooth and warm and soft – like suede!). They despise this, and prove it to me by dropping their blossomed heads onto the floor in the middle of the night – a suicidal gesture of their hatred and solidarity. I keep hoping with enough perseverance I will find a particularly hearty one – a botanical masochist that enjoys being manhandled. It has not happened yet, and I have the 7 bare-stemmed plants staring me down to prove it. But I can’t help by try… I just love having flowers in my life.
In Home Depot I managed to ignore the magnetic pull toward the orchids and went instead to the outdoor plant section. Rows of metal orange racks, exploding with rainbows of coloured flowery goodness. I picked out several vibrant daffodils, tulips, and primroses in shades of reds, burgundy, yellow. I know it’s only 9 degrees out (for winter, that’s awesome) but as I stand in the aisles I couldn’t resist temptation. I made the rash decision that today- TODAY- was going to be window-box day.
I planted them in the middle of my living room – a dirty, messy endeavor that I always secretly savor because it reminds me that as an adult living alone, paying fairly high rent – this is one of the perks. It would have been easier to do it in the courtyard… certainly more clean and responsible, with less to messy aftermath. But then my apartment wouldn’t smell like rich soil for the next few days. No, no air freshener could ever replicate this scent.
If I have jinxed myself by trying to rush into Spring, I’m sure the universe will punish me with frost and flurries – a reminder to be patient and allow Winter to take it’s course. If that happens, the Vancouver Olympic Committee can thank me for doing my patriotic part in aiding in the success of the 2010 Winter Games. Either way, it’s a win-win situation.