Of Molecules and Trees

My writing routine has been jiggled around the past couple weeks…by glorious weather, of all things. Chicago, land of weather extremes, has been Chicago, land of consistently warm days and mild nights. Things are blooming in March that shouldn’t be. Fifty percent more skin is feeling the sun and breezes. Neighbors are (gasp) mowing their lawns.


I’ve been dragged away from my computer by flower borders pleading “Rake me! Rake me now!” By my dog, Luci—queen of tragically expressive looks that imply wouldn’t now be the perfect time for a walk?” (There’s a chance I’m projecting…); and by my gardening instincts that are springing to life about five weeks early. Not that I’m complaining, but I usually count on March to be chilly and dampish so I can continue to hole up in my cozy office. 


On the plus side, I’m noticing details I’ve never noticed before: The magnolia-like tulip trees that are plentiful here smell sweet and wonderful. And the flowering pear trees that are are in every third yard, absolutely stink!


I’m guessing that in previous years, the cold temps held the “scent molecules” at bay. This year, said molecules are riding the warm air currents with reckless abandon. Luci must be confused by our intermittent walking speed as we either linger in areas of heady perfume—or speed past the white-blossomed beacons of manky-ness.     

At any rate, I’ve decided to take the philosophical approach: Next time the siren song of perfect weather pries my fingertips off the keyboard, I’ll grab a dog leash or gardening gloves and head outdoors…all in the name of writer-enrichment.*




*See? Writers can rationalize anything.





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