Pictureless Wednesday: Spring will come.

Mommy, why are the trees all pink?

I wouldn't call it a storm, but peculiar precipitation last night,  neither sleet nor hail, and strange conditions all morning, had left a quarter inch of ice balls fused into a layer on every tree branch. As we drove, the trees bending down in front of us, arching into our airspace, were iced with the gentlest brownish-grayish-pink. This in addition to the light dusting of sugar on everything else around, and a specially gray day.

It was a somehow natural color. Behind the pink clouds, suspended water and sunlight, itself barely visible, brought out the variety of browns in the wood: reddish brown, yellowish brown for some grasses, deep greenish on some trunks, pale brown and white on the paulownias. And an infinite variety of shades in between.

Why? Because those are buds, dear. Thanks -- I wouldn't have noticed! The red buds of some kinds of trees, invisible a few days before, were magnified by their ice shields. A tiny bit of color, invisible yesterday, was made brighter in the light refracted by water.

The small ones are cherries, the large, red maples. A few tiny Japanese maple-types in yards, usually standing sentry over a rock.

They were all around us as we drove. And then, on the way out of the play date, it was too late. The ice bits, millions, had melted off or fallen. No special effect. No photograph. Nature is always ephemeral, but it's not worth risking my life to take a picture on the road. I'm going to hang on to this place.

I kept my eyes open. A few errands later, some maples looked like they were fatter now: swollen with water as the day warmed.

I missed the picture, but I can spread the words: Spring will come. Look up outside. It's a promise.

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