A few days ago in Dark Corner, the weather turned cold again after several weeks of warming weather. Spring was sprung so to speak and then came a cold snap! I was talking to my Mother about the weather and she noted the blackberry bushes were blooming so we must be having a Blackberry Winter. Hmm….I had forgotten that term but remember it from my childhood.
If you have never heard of a Blackberry Winter, it is an old adage predominantly used by people in the Appalachians to describe an unseasonably cold period during mid to late spring when the blackberry bushes start growing and blooming. Other terms for a Blackberry Winter are Dogwood Winter, Redbud Winter, and Whippoorwill Winter depending on the region in the country. Oh and be glad we don’t call it a Linsey-Woolsey Britches Winter in Dark Corner which is named for linen and wool underwear or long johns worn in the winter. Sounds itchy and uncomfortable to me!
Looking back, I can remember a few of those Blackberry Winters in Dark Corner! Easter seemed to be a popular time for a cold snap. I distinctly remember wearing a new frilly dress with matching shoes and lacy socks to church, which I hated mind you – not church just the dress up part, and my legs freezing in the cold air. All the little girls wore pretty, bright Easter dresses that were hidden by sweaters and coats. I would have been much more comfortable in a pair of pants, but little girls wore dresses to church whether we liked them or not!
I also remember May as a month of change and not just in the seasons. We looked forward to school ending and enjoying the summer. Late in the month we exchanged school clothes for shorts, took off our shoes to go barefoot and replaced tests for lazing in the sunshine. Wait, what happened? Why did we stop taking significant time away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life just because we grew up? Me, well I am all for a summer break even if it is only for a week or two. I think we all need time to recharge and slow down a little to truly enjoy life. So, here is my advice for today. Plan a vacation and even if it consists of only taking off your shoes and watching the clouds roll by in your backyard for a few days……do it and do nothing! You will enjoy it!