I rather think April, with its traditional alternating showers and sunshine, should be the Brits’ favourite month, as it gives us plenty of weather to talk about. This year, it’s done even better than usual, with snow, hail and torrential rain highlighting some mild summery days, beautiful crisp mornings and glorious sunsets.
Of course the downside of the hail and snow is that if you look closer you’ll see that blossoms like those in the photo are pock-marked and spoiled, and I suspect they are dropping without being pollinated. For the ornamental trees in parks and gardens that may not really matter, but it won’t be good for the fruit harvest later in the year.
Yesterday, a couple of hours after I went out in bright sunshine, I was waiting at a bus stop in the snow. Seeing the bus approaching down the High Street I knew I’d be in the relative warm and dry in just a few minutes, so I was feeling quite smug as I watched the shoppers scurry around in their woolly hats, scrabbling for brollies. Unsurprisingly, perhaps, I remembered this poem:
While others bundle and bunch
under umbrellas, shrug
into pak-a-macs and hunch deep
into their collars, their faces
against the elements, she
at raindrops and laughs
glitter from her hair.
Tomorrow will be May Day and my mother has reminded me to get up early and dabble in the dew. The chances are that it’ll actually be frost, but no matter.